By Dominic Toner
Mile Jedinak and Ritchie De Laet are both in contention to make their Aston Villa debuts against Bristol City on Saturday.
Villa have confirmed that Jedinak has resolved his work permit issues and the 32-year-old midfielder could make his competitive debut after joining from Crystal Palace this summer.
Roberto Di Matteo completed the signing of Leicester defender Ritchie De Laet on Tuesday and the Belgian could also feature in Villa’s away trip to Bristol City.
Di Matteo will be without the injured Rudy Gustede and Aaron Tshibola for the Championship clash, but has a strong squad to deal with the setbacks.
Italian goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini has cemented his place as the side’s number one and is expected to continue ahead of team-mate Mark Bunn.
New pairing Tommy Elphick and James Chester have struck up a solid partnership in the heart of the defence and kept a clean sheet in the club’s last fixture, a goalless draw against Derby.
Belgian defender De Laet could make his Villa debut at right-back with fan favourite Jordan Amavi replacing Aly Cissoko at left-back.
Former Palace midfielder Jedinak is set to line up in the midfield role alongside Ashley Westwood, who has been preferred during the early stages of the season.
Villa are likely to field a familiar front four, with youngster Andre Green the only change as he replaces the injured Gestede.
McCormack will be hoping to grab his second goal for Villa after his first earned a point against Huddersfield.
In other Aston Villa team news, Tony Xia has revealed why the club’s defender is not allowed to leave.