Aston Villa manager Dean Smith is expecting a tough test against Norwich on Saturday as both sides look to secure a win that will help move them clear of the relegation zone.

Norwich beat Villa home and away last season on their way to winning the Sky Bet Championship title, but the Canaries have found life much tougher in the top division.

Villa joined them in the Premier League as they defeated Derby in the play-off final but Smith has warned Norwich they will face different opponents to the ones they twice got the better of last season.

Smith: Only Spurs have outplayed Villa

“Anybody who can beat Manchester City in this league is a team to be reckoned with and they’ve done that already at Carrow Road,” Smith said.

“We know they’ve got firepower within their team and they are tough to play against. We had two tough games against them last season and came out on the wrong side of a 2-1 [defeat] both times.

Smith is wary of Norwich but warned Aston Villa are very different this season Smith is wary of Norwich but warned Aston Villa are very different this season Smith is wary of Norwich but warned Aston Villa are very different this season

“But they won’t have played against this Aston Villa and some of my players won’t have played against them before.

“It’s a game we are looking forward to and I’m sure it’s a game both sides will be looking at to get three points.”

One player who has made the step up to the Premier League look seamless is Villa midfielder John McGinn.

Only Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling has had more shots on target than McGinn in the Premier League this season and Smith is unsurprised by the Scotland international’s progress.

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Aston Villa’s 2-2 draw with Burnley in the Premier League

FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Aston Villa’s 2-2 draw with Burnley in the Premier League

“He feels he could probably have six or seven goals already, such has been the standard of his play,” Smith added.

“We knew what a player we have got, he signed a new contract at the start of the season, and he has been playing very well.

“We knew his adaptation to the Premier League would be seamless and it has been. He’s just showing us the potential we believed he had in him anyway.