Despite the fact that the Scot has a limited transfer and salary budget, it appears that there will be a small protest against the former Birmingham boss ahead of Sunday’s match against Manchester City, which is ironic considering that two big money exports will be lining up against the Villans.
Gareth Barry and James Milner have been followed out of the exit door by Ashley Young and Stewart Downing in recent seasons, while Charles N’Zogbia caused a rumpus after Sunday’s 2-1 defeat at Newcastle by claiming he wasn’t enjoying his football at the moment.
It looks like a prime time for City to be heading to the Midlands and they look backable at odds of 8/11 (Coral free bets) to claim victory and take another step closer to a first ever Premier League title.
Roberto Mancini will be wary of treating the home side too lightly, having done exactly that against Everton and getting beaten 1-0, although a 4-1 victory over Villa at Eastlands suggests that the floodgates could open again in this game.
Sergio Aguero and Edin Dzeko will certainly be in the mood for goals and the forwards can be backed at 4/1 and 5/1 (bet365 bookmaker) respectively to break the deadlock in this encounter.
Aston Villa are a 9/2 chance (William Hill – £25 free bets) to claim victory and silence the anti-McLeish protestors, although it remains to be seen whether N’Zogbia will feature from the start after his derogatory comments on Twitter.
At least there should be some spirited performances from ex-City players Richard Dunne, Shay Given and Stephen Ireland, while Darren Bent remains one of the league’s sharp shooters despite limited chances at Villa.