Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert will return to Carrow Road to take on his old Norwich side in the quarter-final of the Capital One Cup on Tuesday night. Lambert is expected to receive a frosty reception from the home faithful for the way he left the club during the summer, although the bookies fancy they could be cheering an important win come the final whistle.
Chris Hughton has replaced Lambert with distinction at Norwich and they go into this week's match as even favourites with Ladbrokes, who price the draw 23/10 and Villa 11/4. Hughton's spell in charge started shakily with a 5-0 defeat at Fulham on the opening day of the season but they haven't looked back since and they are now unbeaten in their last 10 matches.
Norwich beat Swansea 4-3 at the weekend to move up to 12th in the Premier League table and centre-back Sebastian Bassong was on the scoresheet yet again. The defender has now scored three goals in his last four appearances and he is 7/1 to score anytime on Tuesday, while Norwich will be looking to extend their own fine record at Carrow Road.
The Canaries have won their last five home games, including wins over Manchester United, Arsenal and Tottenham, and they will fancy their chances of enhancing a relatively poor record against Villa. Hughton's side have only won one of the last nine Norwich v Villa meetings, although that sole success did come at Carrow Road when Lambert masterminded a 2-0 win last season.
Lambert has of course moved on to Villa now and he will be wondering if he made the right choice as Norwich are currently four places and seven points better offÂ than 16th place Villa in the league table. The Canaries had much the better of a recent 1-1 draw between the two sides at Villa Park in the league and Lambert faces a huge task at Villa.
He has overseen a four-match unbeaten run, during which they have conceded only one goal, but scoring goals remains a problem. They have managed to score just two in their last five, failing to score in three, and Norwich are 11/4 to win to nil on Tuesday. Lambert will be hoping that his strikers can finally fire and Gabriel Agbonlahor could be a man to look out for in the latest odds.
Agbonlahor has scored four goals in his last four League Cup appearances and his explosive pace ensures he remains an effective weapon on the counter-attack away from home, with Ladbrokes bookmakers going 3/1 that he scores anytime. Agbonlahor was on target in Villa's wins over Man City and Swindon in the previous rounds of this competition but they face a tough task to win at Carrow Road.
Norwich have beaten Doncaster and Tottenham to reach the quarter-finals and the bookies fancy a semi-final appearance is within reach. They could edge this match with Villa and Norwich to win by a margin of one goal can be backed at a best price 31/10 with Ladbrokes, which looks particularly good when you consider all eight of Norwich's wins this season have come via a single goal margin.
Norwich v Aston Villa Form
Check the season's statistics for both Norwich and Aston Villa, plus the odds ahead of Tuesday's match.
Norwich v Aston Villa Tips
Tip #1: Norwich to win by a one goal margin @ 31/10 with Ladbrokes.
Tip #2: Gabriel Agbonlahor to score anytime @ 3/1 with Ladbrokes.
Tip #3: Sebastian Bassong to score anytime @ 7/1 with Ladbrokes.
11/4 Aston Villa
Correct Score Odds
6/1 Norwich 1-0
8/1 Norwich 2-0
15/2 Norwich 2-1
7/1 Draw 0-0
11/2 Draw 1-1
14/1 Draw 2-2
8/1 Aston Villa 1-0
14/1 Aston Villa 2-0
10/1 Aston Villa 2-1
First Goalscorer Odds
9/2 Grant Holt
6/1 Simeon Jackson
7/1 Christian Benteke
7/1 Darren Bent
7/1 Steve Morison
7/1 No Goalscorer
9/1 Gabriel Agbonlahor
9/1 Anthony Pilkington
9/1 Robert Snodgrass
9/1 Wes Hoolahan
10/1 Andreas Weimann
10/1 Jordan Bowery
Odds supplied by Ladbrokes.com, who offer live betting in-running for all Capital One Cup fixtures.
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