Reading-Aston Villa Preview
Paul Lambert will be back on the touchline for Aston Villa for Tuesday night's relegation six-pointer against Reading at Villa Park.
Lambert was in the stands for last Saturday's 0-0 draw against Arsenal after admitting a Football Association improper conduct charge relating to comments he made following the previous Saturday's 5-0 loss at Manchester City.
His side is in the drop zone on 10 points, one more than Reading.
"I will be back in the dugout again," he told Aston Villa's official website. "I don't like being up there in the stands."
The boss was pleased after Brad Guzan posted his third clean sheet of the campaign. Villa had dropped their previous two fixtures but now face a favourable week against the two sides below them, with a trip to Queens Park Rangers coming up Saturday.
"Now we move on to Reading," Lambert said. "Tuesday will be a tough game but we're playing well. There's a good belief that they can win games. We are a threat. Definitely. I really feel that. That's what you want in your side. You really want that."
Dutch international Ron Vlaar exited in the 51st minute with a calf strain, and his status is uncertain after he was replaced by Eric Lichaj.
Villa have gone 220 minutes without a Premier League goal since going up 2-0 against leaders Manchester United on Nov. 10, but were boosted by their strong defence.
"It's a fantastic point, even though we're at home ... the lads defended well and we created some chances,'' Villa defender Matthew Lowton said.
Reading will arrive at Villa Park with four defeats and two draws on their travels. Manager Brian McDermott will have to pick up his lads' spirits after Saturday's 3-2 defeat at Wigan Athletic.
The Royals were gifted an equaliser in the 80th minute on an own goal by Latics goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi before allowing Jordi Gomez to complete a hat trick with the game-winner in the 90th.
"We have to make sure in a situation like that you get a result," McDermott said. "We got back to 2-2 when they were 2-1 up so we've got to get a result there, we've got to be more ruthless."
The Premier League newboys have been tactically naive on various occasions - including being caught out chasing the winner against the Latics.
"We've got the ball in the corner there and we're trying to chase for the goal and that's how we want to play," McDermott said. "Having said that, you come to a place, it's not easy, we deserve at least a point, we should have got it."
Reading notched its first Premier League victory the week before against Everton as Adam Le Fondre's brace was the difference in a 2-1 victory. Defender Sean Morrison was on target at the DW Stadium.
These two sides last met in the sixth round of the 2010 FA Cup, when Villa won 4-2 at the Madejski Stadium on a John Carew hat trick. Villa have won seven of eight league meetings.