Aston Villa: Steven Gerrard facing 'huge pressure' at Villa Park

Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard

Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard will face increased pressure if his side are beaten by West Ham, according to Midlands journalist Josh Holland.

The Villa Park outfit have already lost twice in their opening three matches and Holland reckons another defeat could have Gerrard potentially fearing for his job.

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Despite spending almost £50m in recruiting five new players this window, it’s been far from an ideal start for Gerrard in his first full campaign as a Premier League manager.

Their season started with an extremely disappointing opening-day defeat at Bournemouth, with goals from Jefferson Lerma and Kieffer Moore securing a 2-0 scoreline.

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In front of a vibrant Villa Park crowd, Gerrard’s team bounced back the following week against Everton with a 2-1 victory despite some anxious late moments.

But it was back down to earth last weekend as Ollie Watkins’ first of the season wasn’t able to kick Villa onto three more points, as a Wilfried Zaha inspired Crystal Palace ran out 3-1 winners.

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Thankfully, Villa avoided a potential banana skin at League One Bolton in the Carabao Cup three days later, scoring four times without reply to progress and set up a third round tie at Manchester United.

But the league remains the priority for the Midlands outfit and Holland reckons that the pressure will only mount on Gerrard if they suffer another defeat against the rock-bottom Hammers, who are yet to score.

What did Holland say about Aston Villa?

He told GIVEMESPORT: “Sunday is a huge game, I think if they lose against a West Ham team who’ve obviously not picked up any points, I think the pressure that Gerrard is already under, it’ll only get worse.”

Can Villa beat West Ham?

Villa are more than capable of coming out on top here, they’ve already shown at times this season with the likes of Danny Ings, Watkins and Philippe Coutinho, that on their day, they can beat anybody.

But if they continue defending in the manor they have done at times this season, they’ve got no chance.

Villa have already given away too many soft goals and while West Ham are low on confidence, Jarrod Bowen and Michail Antonio are proven at this level and won’t take any prisoners if Gerrard’s team aren’t at the races.

They also have the extra motivation of knowing the Hammers have been a bogey team for them in recent years, with David Moyes’ men winning their last four meetings, part of an eight match unbeaten run since May 2015.

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