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Many Aston Villa fans will have been disappointed to see Dean Smith sacked from his role earlier this month, with the lifelong fan of the club having enjoyed some memorable high points during his time in charge.
However, there will also be plenty of excitement surrounding the arrival of Gerrard, whose managerial CV already boasts a league title with Rangers, ending Celtic’s nine-year domination in Scotland.
The Liverpool legend’s return to the Premier League has naturally led to some speculating if and when he may move on to Anfield, but Gerrard has stressed that the Villa job is not simply a stepping stone for him, and he undoubtedly still has plenty to prove in his relatively short managerial career so far.
Victory on Saturday would be a perfect start, with only two of Aston Villa’s previous 12 Premier League managers – John Gregory and Gerard Houllier – winning their first top-flight outing in charge of the club.
To join that short list, Gerrard must end Villa’s worst run of Premier League form since 2015-16, with Smith having lost his final five games in charge.
A 1-1 stalemate with Newcastle before the international break was a more disappointing result, although they will still be more than content with their seventh-placed standing after 11 games, sitting level on points with Manchester United and just five points off the top four.
Chelsea and Liverpool are the only teams to have been beaten on fewer occasions than Brighton this term, while those two giants and Manchester City are also the only teams to have conceded fewer goals than the Seagulls so far.
Brighton are also one of three teams – alongside Chelsea and West Ham United – yet to be beaten away from home in the Premier League this season, so Saturday’s trip will not faze them, particularly having secured their first ever away win over Villa on their last visit.
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Goals from Danny Welbeck and Solly March sealed that 2-1 triumph almost exactly a year ago to the day, leaving Villa winless in the last three meetings between the two sides, and having not led at any stage in those games either.
However, last year’s corresponding fixture was also the only time Brighton have tasted victory over Aston Villa in their last 12 attempts, and they will be need to be particularly wary this time around with the hosts hopeful of a new manager bounce.