Aston Villa receive captain injury boost ahead of Liverpool clash

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Aston Villa skipper Jack Grealish is winning his race to be fit to face Liverpool.

The midfielder sat out Wednesday’s 2-1 Carabao Cup victory over Wolves with a calf injury.

He took a knock in the 3-0 defeat at Manchester City but should return for Saturday’s visit of Premier League leaders Liverpool.

Boss Dean Smith said after the Wolves win: “He’s OK. He’ll be pushing to be fit for Saturday. He wasn’t fit (for Wolves) but I wouldn’t have picked him anyway. He’s responded really well.

“I never worry too much when it’s a contact injury, a dead calf – he’s got a small bleed on his calf and he’s responded well to treatment.

“He was here tonight in his fashion, his compression jeans with holes in which probably lets the cold air get to his calf as well.”

Aston Villa manager Dean Smith

Anwar El Ghazi’s goal and Ahmed Elmohamady’s second-half winner set up a quarter-final tie with Liverpool.

Villa reached the last eight for the first time since 2012 with Elmohamady’s first goal in over a year coming three minutes after Patrick Cutrone levelled for Wolves.

“We dominated, both teams made a lot changes,” Smith added. “My only gripe is we didn’t put the game to bed earlier with all the possession we had.

“We gave them opportunities to score and they took that. There was a crazy two minutes. Jed (Steer) made a good save but we saw the game out comfortably.”

To mark the end of the 30-year wait for a league title, the ‘Liverpool Mishmash’ poster is available to order exclusively on This Is Anfield — the history of the Reds in one image!

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