Middlesbrough FC news: Aston Villa receive injury boost as Boro stopper extends loan deal
Aston Villa winger Anwar El Ghazi is available for this weekend's clash with Middlesbrough at Villa Park.
The 23-year-old wide man left the field with arm injury during Vila's 3-1 win over Nottingham Forest on Tuesday night.
Yet El Ghazi, who has made 23 league appearances for Villa this campaign, looks set to his fifth consecutive start against the Teessiders.
“Anwar’s arm got trodden on accidentally in the game at the City Ground," said Villa boss Dean Smith.
"He was in a bit of pain. But he’s available for selection, certainly."
Villa will be without midfielder Henri Lansbury and defender Axel Tuanzebe for the game following recent injury setbacks.
However, Smith revealed the pair have returned to training and could return after the upcoming international break.
Villa have won their last three league games to move within three points of the final play-off position.
Smith's men have also tightened things up at the back in recent weeks, conceding just two goals in their last four games.
The Villa boss know his side will have to be at their best though, against a Boro side who have the best defensive record in the division.
"They have quality players and we have to make sure we keep them out," added Smith.
"Defensively we’ve been very good over the past few weeks. Against Middlesbrough, we’ll need to carry that on. They have players who can score goals.
"We will have to be at our best."
Boro have also allowed goalkeeper Andy Lonergan to extend his emergency loan spell at League One side Rochdale.
Lonergan joined Dale on a short-term move last month and has made six appearances for Keith Hill's side.