McGinn gives Aston Villa injury boost for Chelsea game but Smith has concern
John McGinn has given a timely boost on his return from injury with the Chelsea game in mind.
However, Dean Smith is not entirely convinced he will be entirely ready due to a severe lack of match fitness.
Aston Villa are nervously looking at the drop as they sit 19th in the Premier League .
All is not lost, though, with two points separating them and Watford – who sit outside of the relegation zone on goal difference.
Several sides are wrapped up a Premier League dogfight to stay in the top tier.
Brighton, West Ham, Bournemouth and Norwich are also pining for survival.
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Villa boss Smith knows he needs all his top players and a brutal period saw Tom Heaton, Wesley Moraes and McGinn hit with long-term injuries.
The latter suffered a fractured ankle but is looking to return by the Chelsea match on March 14, admitted Smith.
"John McGinn is nearer," Smith said at a press conference on Friday. "He trained with us.
"We've not had him training in contact sessions yet, he's been involved in possession and shape work.
"He's getting to where we want him to be.
"He's had a CT Scan today to make sure there's a full union of the fracture.
"He feels really good which is the important thing. He'll be pushing me for Chelsea, that's for sure.
"Once he gets on that training ground he'll move quickly and he's certainly progressing quickly now."
McGinn suffered his injury in December against Southampton and has missed a total of 14 games.
Of the nine Premier League matches, Villa have won just two but Smith does not want to rush the Scotsman.
Smith added: "McGinn coming back obviously, there will be a lot of pressure put on him because of the pressure on him before his injury, but we have to make sure he's right until he actually comes back."
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