Chelsea vs. Aston Villa - Football Match Report

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Substitute Douglas Luiz nearly snatched a point for Villa late on but Smith admitted he could have few complaints about the result, with Chelsea going close on several occasions and goalkeeper Tom Heaton having twice brilliantly denied Willian.

Despite Leicester's current position in the top four of the Premier League, the club have shown previously with the likes of Riyad Mahrez, N'Golo Kante and Harry Maguire that they are prepared to sell their best talent should they receive an offer that is too good to refuse. We grew into each half but the first 20 minutes of each half they put us under a lot of pressure.

Chelsea needed a victory after underperforming badly against West Ham and they got one despite spurning a number of chances.

After getting a well-deserved draw at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon, belief in the Villa squad will be high heading into the clash with the Blues, but they will be without a couple of first-team players for the trip.

"The word for me is belief". We come out with the same energy wherever we play. Meanwhile, Aston Villa are 15th and only one point clear of the relegation area.

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"We did that, won more tackles and second balls, and we could have scored more goals".

Lampard said on Tuesday that he will know within "days" whether he can sign players in the new year as the Blues wait to hear if their appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has been successful. Dean Smith will be hoping he doesn't get an up-close reminder of how good Abraham is tonight.

The England global was on loan at Villa last term, and was a huge reason why the club got promoted out of the Championship, and the Villa Park outfit encounter him for the first time since he went back to his parent club.

"He's showing his all-round game, he stretches defences, he starts our press", Lampard said.