Aston Villa midfielder James Milner has been named in caretaker-manager Kevin MacDonald's squad to play West Ham despite his impending move to Manchester City.Watch Aston Villa vs. West Ham United Live Stream Soccer August 14 Barclays Premier League 2010
MacDonald is also confident Milner's fitness levels will not be an issue even though he has played only 23 minutes - for England against Hungary on Wednesday - since the World Cup.
"It was a pretty straightforward decision for me. You need to get your best players on the pitch. James is one of our best players.Watch Aston Villa vs. West Ham United Live Stream Soccer August 14 Barclays Premier League 2010
"James would also have the mental strength to deal with it if the crowd reaction is hostile. He is a tough lad.
"I would expect him not to let it affect him and he is very much a team player.''
MacDonald is hoping the Villa fans will react positively to the former Newcastle player.
He said: "I hope the fans don't get on his back.
"I hope they get behind him and say 'whatever happens, he is playing for us today' and look what he has done for us over the previous couple of years.''
MacDonald is set to be without defensive duo Carlos Cuellar and James Collins through injury.
Another player player with little chance - or should that be fat chance - of playing is West Ham striker Benni McCarthy.
The South African was left out his nation's World Cup squad due to his lack of fitness and has been put on a strict weight-loss regime in a bid to shed some extra pounds.
"Benni has a problem. He needs to lose some weight to be fit - he's a very good player when fit so we are trying our best,'' said Grant.
"I've only been here one month. He's a nice guy, he's doing everything we tell him to do but I cannot follow the players around 24 hours a day - maybe I will in the future.
"But I don't know what any player is doing in their private life and I can't put my finger on it. I know it started a year ago, and it's a pity because he's very skilful and a very good player.
"Any player that belongs to the squad we always try to get the best out of but it is not all one way, the player also needs to do his job.''
New signing Thomas Hitzlsperger is likely to miss out on the trip to his former club after suffering a thigh injury playing for Germany in midweek.