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Free kick awarded for a foul by Ryan Shotton on Fabian Delph. The referee red cards Ryan Shotton for second bookable offence. Indirect free kick taken by Ashley Westwood.
Ashley Westwood sends in a cross, Robert Huth manages to make a clearance.
Fabian Delph crosses the ball, Steven Nzonzi manages to make a clearance.
Eric Lichaj takes a shot.
Ryan Shotton delivers the ball, save by Bradley Guzan.
Foul by Stephen Ireland on Glenn Whelan, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Asmir Begovic.
Shot on goal by Stephen Ireland from inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.
Cameron Jerome is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Ciaran Clark takes the free kick.
The ball is crossed by Ryan Shotton, clearance by Chris Herd.
Chris Herd challenges Peter Crouch unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Robert Huth.
(Aston Villa) makes a substitution, with Fabian Delph coming on for Barry Bannan.
The ball is crossed by Ryan Shotton, clearance by Nathan Baker.
Foul by Ryan Shotton on Stephen Ireland, free kick awarded. Ryan Shotton goes into the referee's book. Peter Crouch comes on in place of Kenwyne Jones. Indirect free kick taken by Barry Bannan.
The ball is swung over by Ryan Shotton, save by Bradley Guzan.
Eric Lichaj produces a cross, Geoff Cameron makes a clearance.
Christian Benteke is ruled offside. Indirect free kick taken by Asmir Begovic.
Foul by Christian Benteke on Steven Nzonzi, free kick awarded. Cameron Jerome on for Matthew Etherington. Robert Huth takes the indirect free kick.
Jonathan Walters has an effort at goal from close range which goes wide right of the target.
The ball is delivered by Robert Huth.
Stephen Ireland joins the action as a substitute, replacing Brett Holman. Darren Bent on for Gabriel Agbonlahor.
Corner taken by Matthew Etherington, save made by Bradley Guzan.
The ball is sent over by Jonathan Walters, Ciaran Clark makes a clearance.
Glenn Whelan crosses the ball, clearance made by Ciaran Clark.
Christian Benteke takes a shot. Ryan Shawcross gets a block in.
Robert Huth concedes a free kick for a foul on Christian Benteke. Matthew Lowton takes the free kick.
Kenwyne Jones challenges Bradley Guzan unfairly and gives away a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Bradley Guzan.
Ryan Shotton delivers the ball, save made by Bradley Guzan.
Steven Nzonzi concedes a free kick for a foul on Chris Herd. Chris Herd takes the free kick.
Ciaran Clark concedes a free kick for a foul on Ryan Shotton. Geoff Cameron restarts play with the free kick.
Brett Holman crosses the ball.
Foul by Ryan Shawcross on Ashley Westwood, free kick awarded. Indirect free kick taken by Barry Bannan.
Jonathan Walters sends in a cross, Nathan Baker makes a clearance.
The official flags Kenwyne Jones offside. Free kick taken by Bradley Guzan.
Christian Benteke takes a shot. Save by Asmir Begovic.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Steven Nzonzi on Nathan Baker. Free kick taken by Bradley Guzan.
The assistant referee signals for offside against Christian Benteke. Asmir Begovic takes the indirect free kick.
Gabriel Agbonlahor sends in a cross.
Corner taken right-footed by Steven Nzonzi from the left by-line to the near post, Ashley Westwood makes a clearance.
Geoff Cameron fouled by Brett Holman, the ref awards a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Ryan Shawcross.
Eric Lichaj gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Kenwyne Jones. Geoff Cameron restarts play with the free kick.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Jonathan Walters. Ciaran Clark restarts play with the free kick.
Unfair challenge on Barry Bannan by Dean Whitehead results in a free kick. Barry Bannan restarts play with the free kick.
Unfair challenge on Glenn Whelan by Christian Benteke results in a free kick. Asmir Begovic restarts play with the free kick.
Christian Benteke concedes a free kick for a foul on Kenwyne Jones. Free kick taken by Geoff Cameron.
Unfair challenge on Ashley Westwood by Robert Huth results in a free kick. Barry Bannan restarts play with the free kick.
Matthew Etherington delivers the ball, Nathan Baker manages to make a clearance.
Ryan Shotton crosses the ball, Nathan Baker makes a clearance.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Christian Benteke by Robert Huth. Ashley Westwood takes the free kick.
Foul by Geoff Cameron on Christian Benteke, free kick awarded. Barry Bannan has an effort direct from the free kick.
Geoff Cameron gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Nathan Baker. Barry Bannan delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from left channel, clearance made by Robert Huth.
The ball is delivered by Jonathan Walters.
Matthew Lowton takes a shot. Save made by Asmir Begovic.
Barry Bannan produces a left-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
Outswinging corner taken by Barry Bannan, Christian Benteke takes a shot. Blocked by Ryan Shawcross.
Centre by Gabriel Agbonlahor, Ryan Shotton manages to make a clearance.
Handball by Christian Benteke. Glenn Whelan takes the free kick.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Christian Benteke. Indirect free kick taken by Asmir Begovic.
Brett Holman takes a shot. Save made by Asmir Begovic.
The ball is delivered by Barry Bannan.
Corner taken left-footed by Barry Bannan from the right by-line, Kenwyne Jones makes a clearance.
Geoff Cameron concedes a free kick for a foul on Gabriel Agbonlahor. Barry Bannan takes the indirect free kick.
Centre by Barry Bannan.
The ball is sent over by Matthew Lowton, clearance by Ryan Shotton. Barry Bannan takes the outswinging corner, clearance made by Glenn Whelan.
Lambert ready for tough Stoke test
Paul Lambert admits Aston Villa may struggle to cope with Stoke's physical threat but challenged his players to capitalise on their own strengths to extend their mini-revival in Saturday's home clash.
Parts of Villa's new-look squad appear almost miniature-like in size and stature compared to their Stoke counterparts - with the exception of striker Christian Benteke.
But Lambert is seeing encouraging signs after a difficult start to the season and nine points from the last seven games have lifted them out of the Barclays Premier League bottom three.
He said: "Christian will cause problems although we are not big enough for the size of Stoke. I don't think you have to make an apology for being physical.
"But Stoke are not just a physical side. We have to use our strengths to play football and play the way we can. There's not a right or wrong way to play football and Tony Pulis has done a fantastic job at Stoke.
"They are in a rich vein of form but that is what a couple of wins can do, can catapult you up the league. This is a really tough game, different, but we are playing well enough to win."
Lambert added: "There are signs of progression. In the last seven games, only the two Manchester clubs have beaten us. I think people tend to overlook that.
"We've been unfairly criticised at times because we are young. People just think 'young team' but we look at the ways things are going at the minute and we are doing really fine.
"You try and give them belief that they can compete and they are more than holding their own and, if you are young enough, you are good enough to get thrown in.
"They have to get thrown in at some stage of their career but I have every faith in those lads to do everything they can for the football club. They have earned the right to play. It is not as if they are there by default."
Villa winger Charles N'Zogbia has returned to training after a six-week absence with a knee problem but Lambert is still to decide whether he will be involved.
Skipper and centre-back Ron Vlaar remains a major doubt with a calf problem which ruled him out of the last two games with Reading and QPR.
Left-backs Enda Stevens (ankle) and Joe Bennett (knee) are still sidelined as Villa look to extend their unbeaten run to four matches.
Stoke boss Tony Pulis feels his Villa counterpart is starting to reap the rewards of putting his faith in youth.
The teams Lambert has fielded since taking over as Villa manager in the summer have not tended to have a great deal of Premier League experience within them and have featured plenty of players in their early twenties.
Pulis has seen enough from Lambert's men recently to suggest that the Scot's selection decisions are beginning to really pay off.
"I think Paul has decided to go a certain way - he has brought the youngsters in," Pulis said. "We have watched the last few games and they have done exceptionally well.
"With youngsters you have to be patient. He has shown a lot of faith in them and I think they have started to reward him with some very good performances.
"I have a lot of respect for Paul - I think he has done smashing wherever he has been, and Villa is a great football club. We know it is going to be a very tough game."
A notable absentee from Villa's squad over the last few weeks has been England international Darren Bent. The striker's omission - he is not injured - has been a major talking point, but it is not something Pulis is keen to give his opinion on.
Asked about Bent's situation, Pulis said: "He is not my player. Whatever Paul does and whatever Darren does at Aston Villa is their responsibility.
"You have to ask Paul about that. If you ask me about someone else's players, that is none of my business."
Pulis is hopeful striker Peter Crouch will be able to return to action.
Crouch, who missed last weekend's 1-0 victory at West Brom having lost some teeth in a collision with Newcastle's Fabricio Coloccini in the previous match, has had a mouth guard fitted and is being monitored in training, while Pulis is also optimistic forward Cameron Jerome will be fit for selection after an ankle injury kept him out of the Baggies contest.
It remains to be seen whether or not fellow frontman Michael Owen, sidelined for the last few weeks by a hamstring problem, is ready to feature again, and the Potters will definitely be without midfielders Charlie Adam, who serves a one-match suspension, and Rory Delap (hernia), along with defender Marc Wilson (broken leg).
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