Aston Villa Football Club was drawn at home to Swansea City in the FA Cup. The claret and blues will host the 13th-place EFL Championship side.
The FA Cup third-round draw took place on Tuesday evening. As a second-tier side, Aston Villa enters the competition in the third-round alongside all 24 Championship clubs and 20 Premier League clubs.
The remaining 20 winners from the first and second-round proper ties means one the of the final 64 teams will be crowned 2018/2019 victors of football’s oldest knockout competition. Dean Smith and his Aston Villa were drawn at home to Welsh side Swansea City.
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The other notable West Midlands ties include: Solihul Moors/Blackpool vs. Arsenal. Villa neighbors Solihul Moors could get the chance to take on Arsenal, should they overcome their second-round replay.
Wolves take on Liverpool in an unfortunate tie of two Premier League sides.
West Ham host archrivals Birmingham City.
West Brom host the recently-relegated Wigan Athletic.
For Villa, the FA Cup gives an opportunity to peripheral players to show what they can do in a competitive environment. Along with some budding youngsters, Dean Smith and staff has another data point in which to evaluate.
Under-23s like Callum O’Hare, Dominic Revan, Jake Doyle-Hayes can stamp their footprint into future first-team plans. While not nearly as important as the league, it’s important Aston Villa shows well in the FA Cup. The club won just three matches in Steve Bruce’s four domestic tournaments as manager.
That’s pitiful, and Villa is 100% able to make a deep run. There’s no reason to pass-up the opportunity to do so.