Eric Black believes that both Birmingham and Villa's poor starts to the campaign will mean that Sunday's first local derby of the season should be an entertaining affair.
Villa have yet to score a Premiership goal at St Andrew's and the fixture in Small Heath two seasons ago was a turgid affair.
It was David O' Leary's first taste of a Second City derby and his side were struggling at that juncture, despite ending the season in sixth position.
It was certainly a case of after the Lord Mayor's show following the carnage at St Andrew's the previous season when Birmingham had won 3-0 amidst chaotic scenes.
The fear factor kicked in for both sides and it was undoubtedly the worst local derby since these two old foes have resumed hostilities in the Premiership.
With Villa currently fifth from bottom in the table, Birmingham just one place better off and only two wins between them all campaign, the portents for this being a classic aren't good. But Birmingham's assistant manager believes Villa's poor start will lead to an open game.
"Villa can't afford to come to our place and sit in and I don't think they will for one moment," said Black.
"Both of us need the points so I can't see either of us playing for a draw and that will help the game.
"Their fans will think that it is time for them to beat us in the Premiership, but we have got to make sure that it doesn't happen this Sunday.
"We will be working very hard to ensure that doesn't happen and the mood has been fine in the camp all week.
"We have been restricted with numbers due to international call-ups and injuries, but that is the usual scenario when there are qualifying games.
"What it has enabled us to do is work in smaller groups on specific areas and help players out individually or within their units on the pitch."
Muzzy Izzet, Jermaine Pennant and Jiri Jarosik are all in the frame to experience the unique atmosphere of this occasion for the first time.
Nicky Butt's suspension rules him out of his first ever Birmingham derby, but it is an experience that requires strong bodies and even stronger minds.
Birmingham haven't been lacking in either of those factors during their three-year tenure back with the elite of English football and Black, who was involved for the first time last term, insists they will be emphasising to players just how important this fixture is.
"The media build-up will let all the players know just how important this game is, but we will certainly be emphasising it to the players.
"It is all that supporters talk about and we want to make sure our minds are totally focused on the job in hand.
"Irrespective of whether one of the teams is first and the other in 20th position, this game is a great leveller and I knew what to expect last season, as all the supporters had told me about it beforehand.
"I wasn't disappointed with the atmosphere, as I thought our fans were magnificent and it makes for a very special occasion.
"We need to recreate that intimidating atmosphere again and use it to our advantage, as nerves always play a big part in these encounters."
Black is a well-rounded individual who is sure to keep a cool head during Sunday's fixture, whatever occurs during the 90 minutes.
The vitriolic atmosphere between both sets of supporters has often spilled over during previous meetings although there are signs, for the first time since Birmingham returned to the top-flight following a 16-year hiatus, that the novelty might just be wearing off.
Nevertheless, Black has seen enough to know that this atmosphere can rival virtually any other in football.
"When I was a player at Aberdeen there was talk of a 'new firm' derby between ourselves and Dundee United, but that never reached anything like the level of this game," continued Black.
"When I was assistant manager at Celtic I had a taste of the Glasgow derby, which in my opinion is the biggest in the world, but this one is right up there with the best of them and I am sure it will be exactly the same on Sunday once again."
Meanwhile Richard Stevens has been appointed the new Academy Manager after a successful six-week trial period. The 32-year-old has been with the Academy for seven years in various capacities and will replace Stewart Hall who left his post in August.