Swansea City host Aston Villa at the Liberty Stadium for Saturday’s evening kick-off knowing that three points will effectively secure safety having endured a troubled season so far.
The Swans could be 11 points clear of the bottom three by the end of the weekend, having been rooted in the relegation places prior to Francesco Guidolin’s appointment in January.
The 60-year-old Italian has missed their last three matches due to a chest infection, but is expected to return this weekend – they have won two of those in his absence.
Nine points adrift of safety with eight to play, it is a case of when, rather than if, Villa’s relegation to the Championship next season is confirmed.
Last weekend produced a similar story to the rest of their season so far – their 2-0 defeat at home to Tottenham was their fifth in a row and the third time in five matches they had failed to score.
Club legend Brian Little returned to Villa Park this week, and is set to take a place on their board – the 62-year-old is currently manager of Jersey.
Winger Jefferson Montero is nearing a comeback for the home side having almost recovered from illness, meanwhile fellow forward Modou Barrow (Hamstring) is rated 50-50 to take part.
Villans striker Gabriel Agbonlahor (Thigh) faces a late fitness test for the visitors.
League Positions: Swansea – 16th (33 pts); Aston Villa – 20th (16 pts)
Form: Swansea City – DLLWWD; Aston Villa – WLLLLL
Previous Meeting: Aston Villa 1-2 Swansea – October 24, 2015; Premier League
Key Players: Aston Villa – Jordan Veretout; Swansea – Gylfi Sigurdsson
Shoot Says: Swansea 2-0 Aston Villa