'If we win our game in hand, if we put decent points on the board in the next two games we'll be right in the shake-up,' Dowie said.
Related ArticlesBirmingham City v Hull City: match previewIain Dowie demands 'huge response' from HullStephen Hunt out for seasonHull City 1 Burnley 4Hull City v Burnley: match previewSport on television'We've got Wigan to play, that's a crucial game. There'll be some twists and turns but we've got to make sure we look after our business.'
Dowie's team bounced back from a 4-1 hammering by second-bottom Burnley last time out at the KC Stadium to draw 0-0 at Birmingham.
Now he wants his team to grab hold of a Premier League lifeline against Villa and then when Sunderland head to Humberside on Saturday in high-pressure contests.
'It's what this game's about - pressure,' Dowie added. 'Last Saturday at Birmingham at the end you enjoy it but at the time it's a hugely stressful environment. We can't wait for the game to come around.'
'Certainly with two games at home we've got to put some serious points on the board.
"We're well aware of the threat that Villa pose. They're the third best team away from home in the league, we know what they bring.'
Dowie is full of admiration for the work that Villa counterpart Martin O'Neill has done at Villa Park but believes he has identified a few chinks in his team's armour.
'Martin's done a terrific job there, the money he's invested he's invested in great players,' Dowie continued.
'But we can't spend too much time worrying about what they'll bring to the party.
'It's about what we bring and if we bring what we did at Birmingham on Saturday and a little bit more craft and a little bit more rub of the green we'll put some points on the board for sure.
'We need four more replica performances but hopefully a little more end-product. Villa will come to win, Martin's said that, his sides are set up to do that.
'They're as good a side as any in the country at counter-attacking in my opinion. We've got to make sure that we cope with their threats but also make sure we expose one or two weaknesses they have.'