PREVIEW: WEEKEND ENGLISH ACTION
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JOHN KRETLOW - Friday, April 19, 2013
Clint Dempsey and Tottenham Hotspur are back in action as they take on Manchester City, while Brad Guzan and Aston Villa continue their quest for safety in their game against Manchester United.

Manchester United - Aston Villa

Brad Guzan and Aston Villa look to separate themselves from the drop zone as they take on Manchester United at Old Trafford.

Guzan is expected to start at goal for United, while Eric Lichaj hopes to make the game day roster for the Villains.

Villa is coming off a draw with Fulham last week at home. They go into this week's game playing strong soccer as they have only lost once in their last five league games.

Despite Villa's good run though, they still stand just three points above the relegation zone with five games left in the season. Guzan and company will have to manage their first win against United since 2009 if they want to move up in the standings.

United are well on thier way to another Premier League title, as they lead Manchester City by 13 points in the standings. They drew against West Ham United this past week however and will look to bounce back with three points on Monday.

Villa's Gabby Agbonlahor is recovering from a thigh injury and is questionable to feature.

Queens Park Rangers - Stoke City

Geoff Cameron and Stoke City take on Queens Park Rangers in a massive relegation zone clash in London.

Cameron looks to start once again in Stoke's backline, while Brek Shea hopes to make the 18 for the Potters.

The Potter's go into Saturday's match hoping to end their run of tough games. They have not won a game since February and have fallen dramatically down the standings. Tony Pulis' side is just three points above the drop zone and are in deep need of a victory.

QPR is eight points from safety with five games left in the season. The London club has lost three out of their last four games and nearly have to go perfect in the coming week's in order to avoid playing Championship soccer next season.

Stoke's Matthew Etherington and Marc Wilson are questionable to feature.

Sunderland - Everton

Tim Howard and Everton look for a pivotal three points in their quest for a final four finish in their game against Sunderland this weekend.

Howard and company are coming off a draw against Arsenal in London last week. The Toffees have gone unbeaten in their last five games, but with games dwindling in the season, three points is almost necessary.

Everton is in sixth place and trails Tottenham by two points for the Europa League spot and Arsenal by four points for the last Champions League position.

Sunderland is battling for their Premier League lives as they are just three points above the drop zone. They won a massive game on the road last week at Newcastle and look to keep that momentum going with a win against the Toffees.

Craig Gardner is suspended and will miss for Sunderland, while Leon Osman is likely to be sidelined for Everton.

Tottenham Hotspur - Manchester City

After being knocked out of the Europa League, Clint Dempsey and Tottenham set their focus once again on league action as they take on Manchester City at White Hart Lane.

Dempsey notched two goals in Tottenham's loss to Basel and could be in the starting lineup once again on Sunday.

Spurs go into this weekend's matchup having won just once in their last four league games. They are currently in a Europa League spot, but a Champions League position is not far off as they trail Arsenal by two points and Chelsea by three in the standings.

City has won four straight games and look to continue the streak on Sunday. Despite their strong play though, catching Manchester United looks to be out of the question as they trail them by 13 points.

Gareth Bale is likely to be sidelined once again for Spurs.

Sheffield Wednesday - Ipswich Town

Stuart Holden could play part in Sheffield Wednesday's crucial battle against Ipswich Town this weekend.

Holden played 60 minutes in the Owls' draw with Blackpool on Tuesday. Wednseday has been cautious with the midfielder as he returns to full fitness after a long injury spell, but the former Houston Dynamo star could see time this weekend.

The Owls find themselves just three points above the drop zone and have gone winless in their last two games. With just three games left, a win this weekend will go far in keeping the Owls in safety.

Notes

Sebastian Lletget is not likely to play in West Ham United's game against Wigan Athletic.

Seb Hines hopes to feature in Middlesbrough's game against Bolton. Tim Ream looks to dress but is unlikely to feature for the Wanderers.

Zak Whitbread could see the field in Leicester City's game against Crystal Palace.

Jonathan Spector is injured and questionable to feature in Birmingham City's match against Leeds United.

Conor Doyle and Derby County host Peterborough United in Championship action.

Frank Simek is injured and questionable to play in Carlisle United's game against AFC Bournemouth.

Mike Grella hopes for playing time in Scunthorpe United's game against Milton Keynes Dons.

Jon Paul Pittman and Oxford United host Rochdale in League Two action.
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