Steven Davis insists that he still has enough left in the tank to help inspire a big finish to Aston Villa's season.

This Sunday's derby against West Bromwich Albion serves as a reminder that Davis has not scored in ten Premiership matches since scoring in Villa's 2-1 win over the Baggies at The Hawthorns in early January.

Admittedly, the young midfielder has scored twice in the FA Cup in that time to help him rank as Villa's joint second top marksman this season with Luke Moore on eight goals.

Davis has remained one of the few bright spots in an increasingly frustrating campaign. But, after 16 months' almost unbroken use as a first-team regular, Villa manager David O'Leary is cautious not to run him into the ground.

"I've been playing him and playing him," said O'Leary. "And it's asking a lot to keep expecting so much out of the same player. It's down to the fact that we had to send Eirik Bakke back [to Leeds] when we did. That's catching up with us now."

But Davis is confident that he has plenty left to give this season, starting with the two crunch clashes in successive Sundays against Albion and Birmingham City.

"Over the Christmas period I felt a bit tired," he said. "That was from the amount of games you play in a short space of time. But now the games are once a week again I'm feeling quite fresh, or as fresh as you can be at this stage of the season.

"I just want to play in every game between now and the end of the season and do a job for Villa. And the derby games are obviously ones you don't want to miss.

"The whole of Birmingham knows how big derby games are. I remember going to see my first against Blues at St Andrew's when they first came up to the Premiership. I remember the intensity of it and how it makes your stomach churn. It doesn't get any less when you're out there as a player.

"But the next two games against Albion and Blues are not just massive for the players. It's even more so for the fans and it would be nice to give them something back.

"For whatever reason, we've not been doing it over the last couple of months and this is a chance to put things right.

"The Villa fans would like to see Blues go down. But we just need points on the board to make us mathematically safe.

"Most of the games we have left are winnable and the important thing is just getting the results, starting on Sunday against Albion.

"We've won our two away derbies this season but, after losing to Blues and failing to beat Albion last season, it's time we won a derby at home.

"It was a great feeling scoring in a derby at The Hawthorns and to score in the next two would take me to double figures for the season and that would be fantastic. But the main thing is just winning.

"Tackles will be flying in. That's part and parcel of any derby and it will be a different type of game from Saturday which was one to forget about.

"Having said that, although there were one or two things we could have done better, on Saturday's form, Arsenal would have caused problems for most teams. Every one of their players was on fire, a bit like when they came to Villa Park last season. I came on a sub that day and there was not a lot we could have done about that either."

Villa are more encouraged that Milan Baros (ankle) and skipper Olof Mellberg (hamstring) will be fit to return. And it was a heartening sight yesterday that James Milner was back in his training gear. But there is still a concern over the knee injury sustained by Gareth Barry in Saturday's 5-0 licking at Highbury.

Barry underwent a precautionary scan yesterday, but Villa are hopeful that he will be fit for Sunday.