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Aston Villa handed double boost ahead of Newcastle clash

By Amir Mir

Tommy Elphick and Jordan Ayew avoided suspensions after the Aston Villa duo came through the 0-0 draw with Ipswich without being cautioned.

According to the Birmingham Mail, prior to Villa’s draw with Ipswich, they had the worst disciplinary record in the league with 23 yellow cards in their opening seven matches.

Roberto Di Matteo’s men meet Rafa Benitez’ Newcastle side next Saturday in a mouth-watering fixture between the Championship’s big boys.

The club’s captain Elphick and forward Ayew both currently have four bookings to their names, but will be hoping to take the field against the Magpies, if selected by manager Di Matteo.

The senior duo have been regular features for the Italian this term, with Elphick starting every league fixture this season and helping his side keep three clean sheets in eight games.

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Additionally, Ayew has started the same amount of games as Elphick, but has registered no goals this term with only two assists to his name.

But the Ghana international has adopted a wide role for Di Matteo this season as Ross McCormack, Rudy Gestede and Jonathan Kodjia have been preferred more centrally.

In other Aston Villa team news, a reliable journalist has reported the time frame of Ritchie De Laet’s injury, worse than first feared.