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  1. Arsenal 3-1 Aston Villa: Arteta reaction, published at22:31 22 October

    Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta to BBC Sport: “The way we started the game and the way we continued [were good]. We attacked them really aggressively, we won every duel. We were creative, a threat. I’m proud of the team, they played really well.

    “This is how we have to play. This is when we are good, when we play with real desire, real commitment and can have clear ideas of how to attack them.

    “We are closer together as a team. Our decisions were good. We have good players.”

    On only leading 1-0 despite having loads of chances: “That was the worry. That [second] goal was really helpful. We deserved many more. Villa are a really good side. When they had a little bit of the ball in your half they can cause problems.”

    On talented youngsters: “This is what you get. They can get you the level, they need the consistency. That comes with experience and maturity. It has to happen now. They showed they can do it tonight.

    “It was really impressive what they did, especially Nuno Tavares. This was his first start. To play with courage, credit to the boy.

    “We reviewed the Crystal Palace game, how we started and why we weren’t consistent in the game. We put it right today.”

    On the penalty award: “This is why VAR is good. The ref can’t see it. VAR overturned.”

  2. Arsenal v Aston Villa: Confirmed team news, published at19:00 22 October

    Alexandre Lacazette makes his first Premier League start since April.

    Bukayo Saka is fit to start despite being injured in Monday's 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace.

    Arsenal make three changes from that game, with Lacazette, Nuno Tavares and Albert Sambi Lokonga replacing Kieran Tierney, Nicolas Pepe and Martin Odegaard.

    Arsenal: Ramsdale, White, Gabriel, Tomiyasu, Tavares, Partey, Sambi Lokonga, Smith Rowe, Saka, Aubameyang, Lacazette. Subs: Leno, Odegaard, Maitland-Niles, Holding, Soares, Pepe, Elneny, Kolasinac, Martinelli.


    Aston Villa are unchanged from their 3-2 defeat by Wolves.

    Matty Cash has recovered from a dead leg suffered in that game.

    Leon Bailey is on the bench after recovering from a thigh injury.

    Aston Villa: Martinez, Konsa, Mings, Tuanzebe, Targett, Cash, Luiz, McGinn, Buendia, Watkins, Ings.Subs: Steer, Sanson, Young, Nakamba, El Ghazi, Hause, Bailey, Archer, Ramsey.

  3. Lawro's predictions: Arsenal v Aston Villa , published at14:55 22 October

    Mark Lawrenson takes on Elena Cole and Haydn Craven, stars of football drama Jamie Johnson, for the latest round of Premier League predictions.

    Mark Lawrenson

    Lawro's prediction: 2-1

    Both these teams are in mid-table for a reason - there are some positives about the way they have started the season, but there are ways to get at them too.

    Aston Villa suffered a late collapse against Wolves last time out, while Arsenal scraped a draw with Crystal Palace on Monday in a game that said more about where they are at the moment than their recent run of three straight wins did.

    The Gunners probably thought they had turned the corner after their poor start to the season but I don't think that is the case. I'm going with them to win this one, but that is mainly down to them having home advantage - it is going to be another close one.

    Elena's prediction: Arsenal were a bit dodgy at the start of the season while Aston Villa have been more good than bad. This is going to be a draw. 1-1

    Haydn's prediction: Arsenal have picked up and are on a bit of a roll at the moment. 1-0

    Find out how Lawro, Elena and Haydn think the rest of this week's fixtures will go

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  4. Arsenal v Aston Villa: Team news, published at14:15 22 October

    Arsenal's Bukayo Saka and Aston Villa's Matty Cash

    Arsenal will assess Bukayo Saka, who was taken off against Crystal Palace on Monday night after a heavy challenge by James McArthur.

    Manager Mikel Arteta says he has fitness concerns about "two or three" unnamed players.

    Wingers Leon Bailey and Bertrand Traore are both available for Aston Villa after recovering from thigh injuries.

    Matty Cash has overcome the dead leg that prompted his substitution during the defeat by Wolves last week.

    Who makes your Arsenal team?

    Pick and share your Villa XI here

  5. Arsenal 2-2 Crystal Palace: Fantasy football top performers, published at12:05 22 October

    Alistair Bruce-Ball's Fantasy Football Tips - banner

    A late Alexandre Lacazette equaliser meant Crystal Palace were held to a 2-2 draw by Arsenal in the latest round of Premier League fixtures - but who were the top fantasy football performers from the match?

    The bonus points were shared between players from both sides:

    • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang & Christian Benteke (3)

    • Odsonne Edouard (1)

    So which Gunners and Palace players - if any - should be making it into your team for gameweek nine? Don't forget this week's deadline is 18:30 BST on Friday before Arsenal face Aston Villa.

    Read Alistair Bruce-Ball's fantasy football tips to find out

    And listen to the Fantasy 606 podcast on BBC Sounds

  6. Aubameyang finds home comforts, published at11:10 22 October

    Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored in each of his last three Premier League games at Emirates Stadium. He’s netted 42 Premier League goals at the Emirates, second only to Robin van Persie (46)
  7. Premier League fixtures at a glance, published at10:41 22 October

    Premier League fixtures: Arsenal v Aston Villa (Fri, 20:00 BST), Chelsea v Norwich (Sat, 12:30 BST), Crystal Palace V Newcastle (Sat, 15:00 BST), Everton v Watford (Sat, 15:00 BST), Leeds v Wolves (Sat, 15:00 BST), Southampton v Burnley (Sat, 15:00 BST), Brighton v Man City (Sat, 17:30 BST), Brentford v Leicester (Sun, 14:00 BST), West Ham v Tottenham (Sun, 14:00 BST), Man Utd v Liverpool (Sun, 16:30 BST)
  8. Transfer news: Arsenal deny signing 'little Messi', published at07:20 22 October

    Gossip graphic

    Arsenal have denied they have officially signed a four-year-old who became an Instagram sensation and instead say the kid dubbed 'Little Messi' is playing at one of their development centres. (Sun), external

    Gunners boss Mikel Arteta says he was not worried that 21-year-old English midfielder Emile Smith Rowe, who was the subject of two bids from Aston Villa in the summer, would leave the Gunners. (Metro), external

    Meanwhile, former Arsenal and England midfielder Jack Wilshere, 29, is open to a move to Major League Soccer with Inter Miami. (Talksport), external

    Want more transfer news? Read Friday's full gossip column

  9. Arsenal v Aston Villa: Last time out, published at14:58 21 October

    Matty Cash and Nicolas PepeImage source, Getty Images

    Arsenal host Aston Villa in the Premier League this weekend - but what happened when the two teams last met in the top flight?

    Dean Smith's Villa completed a first top-flight double over Arsenal for 28 years with an early first-half goal all they needed.

    Gunners' goalkeeper Mat Ryan conceded 74 seconds into his debut as Villa followed up a 3-0 win at Emirates Stadium in November 2020 with a narrow 1-0 victory at Villa Park.

    Bertrand Traore pounced on a mistake by Cedric Soares before Ollie Watkins scored with a shot that deflected off Rob Holding.

    Ryan, who started in place of suspended first-choice keeper Bernd Leno, later produced a good save to deny Traore.

    Villa keeper Emi Martinez frustrated his former club when the Argentina stopper made an excellent save to keep out Granit Xhaka's free-kick.

    Villa moved up to eighth in the Premier League while Arsenal's defeat left them 10th.

  10. No doubts about Lacazette motivation - Arteta, published at14:17 21 October

    Alexandre LacazetteImage source, Getty Images

    Mikel Arteta has no doubts Alexandre Lacazette will continue to give his all despite uncertainty over his Arsenal future and believes the French striker could still sign a new contract.

    Lacazette's current deal expires at the end of the season and he will be free to speak to other clubs in January about a move.

    The 30-year-old has yet to start in the Premier League this season, though he did come off the bench to score a stoppage-time equaliser against Crystal Palace on Monday.

    "I had no doubts about that (Lacazette's motivation)," Arteta said. "If I had, probably I would suggest to do something different with him in the summer, when a player could not find the motivation or if his interests are just with his financial future.

    "It is not the case with Laca, and he has shown that since I have been here every single day. That's why he is a really important player for us."

    On the chances of Lacazette signing a new deal, Arteta added: "Anything is possible. It depends on a lot of things, it is not just a matter of being willing; it is about being possible to fulfil that will and when, which is very important as well."

  11. Arsenal v Aston Villa: What does the form show?, published at13:14 21 October

    Arsenal v Aston Villa form in past five games: Arsenal - draws v Crystal Palace and Brighton, wins v Tottenham, Wimbledon and Burnley. Aston Villa - losses v Wolves and Tottenham, win v Man Utd, loss v Chelsea on penalties, win v Everton
    Image caption,

    *Aston Villa lost 4-3 on penalties to Chelsea following a 1-1 full-time result in the Carabao Cup third round

    • Arsenal had won seven of their nine Premier League games on a Friday before the beginning of last season (drawn two). Since then, however, the Gunners have lost each of their last two such fixtures at home to Everton (1-0) and away to Brentford (2-0) on the opening day this season.

    • Of the 12 Premier League sides to have featured at least 10 times in the league on a Friday, only Leicester (one from 12) and Spurs (two from 11) have a lower win ratio in such fixtures than Aston Villa (two from 10), beating Spurs 4-1 in December 1997 and Everton 2-0 in August 2019.

    • Villa boss Dean Smith has won 75% of his Premier League meetings with Arsenal (three wins from four matches) – of all managers to have faced the Gunners at least four times in the competition, only Pep Guardiola has a better win rate against them (91%).

  12. Arteta on Saka, injuries & Lacazette contract, published at11:38 21 October

    George Cummins, BBC Sport

    Mikel Arteta has been speaking to the media before Arsenal’s home game with Aston Villa on Friday (20:00 BST).

    Here are the key points from the Gunners boss:

    • It’s unclear whether Bukayo Saka will start for Arsenal against Aston Villa having not trained since he was kicked by James McArthur in Monday’s 0-0 draw with Crystal Palace: “I’m not a betting man, it’s down to the doctors and himself”;

    • The Arsenal manager said “two to three players" are also doubts for Friday's match and will be assessed later in training;

    • Arteta was keen not to reveal whether Alexandre Lacazette will start against Villa after his late goal earned the Gunners a point against Palace;

    • The Frenchman’s contract with Arsenal expires next summer and Arteta said “anything is possible” when asked if Lacazette will be offered a new deal to stay at Emirates Stadium;

    • “I have no doubts about that (his motivation) and if I did I would probably have decided to do something different in the summer if the motivation was just his financial future. It’s not the case with Laca."

    Read more from Arteta and follow all of Thursday's news conferences

  13. Hear from the Arsenal boss on Thursday, published at07:39 21 October

    Mikel Arteta press conference coming up

    Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is due to speak to the media at about 10:00 BST on Thursday.

    Catch up with all the key lines from his news conference on this page later.

    Follow Thursday's news conferences in our live page

  14. Gunners duo make top 10 full-back list, published at13:02 20 October

    Former Arsenal full-backs Lee Dixon and Ashley ColeImage source, Getty Images

    From the old-school dogged defensive stalwarts to today's high-energy, flying wing-backs, the role of the full-back has changed dramatically over the years. But who ranks among the best in the Premier League era?

    That was the subject tackled by Gary Lineker, Alan Shearer and Micah Richards in the latest Match of the Day: Top 10 podcast.

    Two Arsenal players made the final cut, with Ashley Cole ranked number one by both Shearer and Richards. Cole won two Premier League titles with the Gunners, including the famous 'Invincibles' triumph in 2003-04, before moving to Chelsea in 2006.

    Lee Dixon was ranked ninth by Richards and eighth by Shearer. Dixon, who won four English top-flight titles, two of them the Premier League, formed part of the legendary Arsenal back four, also including Nigel Winterburn, Tony Adams and Steve Bould.

    Shearer on Cole: "This, for me, was my easiest topic to pick number one. Ashley Cole stands out on here more than anyone else for being a defender. He was the best at that. Very rarely anyone got past him. You couldn't rough him up because he was hard as nails. He was nasty, horrible at times. But one versus one, he was magnificent."

    Lineker on Dixon: "Dixon started in the lower leagues - Burnley, Chester and Stoke, where Arsenal got him from - but he always played in that position and knew it well. And then obviously it would help to play in THAT famous Arsenal back four."

    Who else made the cut?

    And listen to how they reached their final list in Match of the Day: Top 10 on BBC Sounds

  15. Arsenal v Aston Villa: Head-to-head stats, published at11:02 20 October

    Arsenal v Aston Villa Premier League head-to-head record, 52 games. Arsenal: 27 wins, 88 goals, 20 clean sheets. Aston Villa: 11 wins, 47 goals, 13 clean sheets.
    • Arsenal – who faced Aston Villa in the first ever competitive game at the Emirates Stadium – have lost four of their past 10 home league games against the Villans (won six). The Gunners have only lost more league games at their new ground against Man City (five) and Chelsea (six).

    • Villa have won their past three Premier League meetings with Arsenal, as many as they had in their previous 36 matches against them in the competition (won three, drawn nine, lost 24). They last recorded four consecutive league victories against the Gunners in September 1962.

    • Each of the past nine Premier League meetings between the sides at the Emirates has seen at least three goals scored. The only specific fixture to see a longer such run in the competition is Manchester City at home to Newcastle – 11 times between 2007 and 2020.

  16. Arsenal v Aston Villa: Who makes your Gunners team?, published at18:01 19 October

    Arsenal team selector graphic

    Arsenal host Aston Villa in the latest round of Premier League fixtures on Friday, but who will make it into Mikel Arteta's starting XI?

    You'll be able to pick - and share on social media - your own line-up for every Premier League game throughout the campaign.

    It's up to you how to approach it - you could go for the team you WANT the boss to pick or the one you THINK he will.

    Either way, it's time to choose your Gunners team to face Villa