Previous villa midfielder Merson believes Smith’s team will be tough customers for Premier League sides this season and backed them up to beat the Wolves over the weekend.
Villa has been unbeaten on home soil so far in this campaign that has swept away Newcastle United and Everton to Brentford. They want their fourth win of the season against Bruno Lage’s side, but could be a step up in the Premier League table by the Wolves if they lose at Villa Park on Saturday afternoon.
Despite losing Jack Grealish to Manchester City for a record Premier League transfer fee over the summer, Villa’s £95m investment to attack the trio of Emiliano Buendia, Danny Ings and Leon Bailey has garnered applause.
Still, all three summer purchases haven’t yet played a single minute of action with last season’s top scorer Ollie Watkins, and that paints a picture of why Merson believes the best will be on Smith’s side.
“I think Aston Villa is waiting to explode,” said Merson. sportskeeda Previewing the Premier League match against the Wolves.
“I always say that when you play teams like Brighton and Aston Villa in the Premier League and you come back with three points, they have a really good win.
“The Wolves miss a lot of chances for my liking, but Raul Jimenez seems to be back in shape.
His goal against Southampton was absolutely mind-blowing but it’s a big derby game and I’m going for a Villa win.”
Merse’s prediction: Aston Villa 2-1 Wolves