By Dominic Toner
David Prutton has predicted Aston Villa to draw 2-2 against Birmingham on Sunday.
Villa host their Midlands rivals in the Championship and will be looking to respond from consecutive 3-1 defeats.
Steve Bruce’s side are 12th-placed in the table and may already have one eye on next season.
Meanwhile, Birmingham are fighting relegation this campaign and are just three points above the drop zone.
The Blues decided to sack Gianfranco Zola and have appointed Harry Redknapp as their new boss.
The experienced manager’s first Birmingham game in charge will be a daunting trip to Villa Park for a crucial derby match.
Sky Sports pundit Prutton has tipped a 2-2 scoreline between the two sides and has backed forward Scott Hogan to score the opening goal.
“Steve Bruce’s thoughts will be on next season but he will know how important the derby is,” Prutton told Sky Sports. “With the way the teams are set up at this moment I see things ending level, with Redknapp getting a reaction out of the Blues.”
Villa don’t have much left to play for this season, but a clash against great rivals Birmingham will certainly mean a lot to the fans.
They recorded a 1-1 draw in the previous meeting this campaign at St Andrews and would love to send the Blues into further relegation trouble at the weekend.
Bruce has managed to steady the ship since his mid-season appointment and will now be looking towards building a team that can fight for promotion back to the Premier League next season.
In other Aston Villa news, the club’s supporters will love Simon Jordan’s latest Twitter dig at Birmingham.