FA Cup final: Boost for Aston Villa as star set to win fitness fight

first_imgAston Villa goalkeeper Shay Given is winning his battle to be fit for Saturday’s FA Cup final.The veteran Irishman, who has played throughout Villa’s run to the Wembley showpiece, has been struggling with a groin injury and was rated a major doubt to face Arsenal.But Tim Sherwood revealed on Thursday that the 35-year-old is now back in training, along with Kieran Richardson (calf), Aly Cissokho (groin) and Jores Okore (knee).Sherwood insists he has yet to decide on his starting line-up, but suggested he could start with the same team which saw off Liverpool in the semi-final – good news for Given and Richardson.He said: “He [Shay Given] trained today so we’re hopeful he’ll be alright. But the nature of this club is you can’t hold your breath. We’re training tomorrow so we’re likely to lose two or three.“I’ve not yet made my decision on the keeper. Come back tomorrow and I’ll tell you then.“Kieran trained today, Cissokho is fit and Okore trained for the first time today. If everyone’s fit we could play the same team as the semi-finals.”Villa last reached the FA Cup final 15 years ago, when they were beaten 1-0 by Chelsea, and have not lifted the trophy since 1957.Arsenal, the holders, are fully expected to emerge victorious this weekend, but Sherwood is determined to cause an upset.“It’s a huge occasion for everyone involved and it’s a huge honour to be taking them to Wembley,” said Sherwood.“But no-one ever remembers the bridesmaids, no-one remembers who loses in a cup final.” 1 Shay Given in action for Aston Villa last_img read more