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Aston Villa boss Smith: Players full of confidence going to Man Utd

Aston Villa boss Dean Smith says they go to Manchester United in good shape.

Smith believes their defeat to Chelsea will stand them in good stead for today's game.

He reasoned: “The Chelsea Premier League game was the catalyst – we went toe-to-toe with them and created big chances. A mistake killed the game for us in that one.

“We took that positivity into the game against Everton and it was a bit of a chess game for 60 minutes, but once we got our first goal it was all guns blazing and a comfortable win in the end.

“We feel like there's a lot of confidence and belief in the group and we feel like we've got a talented group, so there's no reason why there shouldn't be."

On Villa's young players, Smith added: “You only have to look at the subs I put on against Chelsea – it was Jaden Philogene-Bidace and Carney Chukwuemeka. Cameron Archer started the game.

“That's three young lads who've come through the Academy, but they're players who are capable of playing at Premier League level. They showed that the other night.

“Jaden and Carney have had a taste of Premier League action at the end of last season. Cameron's yet to taste it, but he's certainly made us aware of the attributes he's got.

“It's a great case study for our Academy boys to say when you've got an opportunity to train in front of the first team coaches then go and do what he's done because he's had the opportunity now."

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