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Played
March 24, 2012 3:00 PM GMT
Emirates Stadium — London
Referee:‬ P. Dowd‎
Attendance:‬ 60108‎
 
16′ Kieran Gibbs
 
25′ Theo Walcott
 
90+3′ Mikel Arteta
 

Arsenal - Aston Villa Preview: Gunners have lost just once to the visitors in their last six meetings

Alex McLeish's side head to the Emirates off the back of only one win in seven matches to face Arsene Wenger's team, but the the Villains are unbeaten in the past three games

By Alex Young


PROBABLE LINEUPS

ARSENAL

Szczesny
Sagna, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Gibbs
Gervinho, Arteta, Song, Oxlade-Chamberlain
Ramsey

Van Persie
ASTON VILLA

Given
Hutton, Collins, Cuellar, Warnock
Albrighton, Petrov, Bannan, N'Zogbia
Ireland
Agbonlahor

Arsenal have no new injury worries to contend with for the clash against Aston Villa, so expect Arsene Wenger to rotate slightly after facing a tough Everton side just three days previously.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Gervinho may come in with Theo Walcott and Tomas Rosicky relegated to the bench.

Jack Wilshere (ankle), Abou Diaby (hamstring), Sebastian Squillaci (groin) and Francis Coquelin (hamstring) are nearing a return to fitness, but are not expected to make a comeback before the end of March.

For Alex McLeish, along with Darren Bent being sidelined for the remainder of the season, defenders Richard Dunne (collar) and Ciaran Clarke (knee) will occupy the treatment table until early April.

Unfortunately, McLeish does not have the same squad depth that Wenger enjoys, so the more-or-less the same side who beat Fulham 1-0 last time out could feature. Barry Bannan replacing the inexperienced Chris Herd in the centre of midfield could be the only change.


DID YOU KNOW?
  • The two sides met in the FA Cup in January (pictured right) when Arsenal came from two goals down to win 3-2.
  • Mikel Arteta has the most attempted passes in the Premier League with 1892.
  • Arsenal’s last defeat at the Emirates was the 2-1 loss against Manchester United in January.
  • Aston Villa’s last away victory was in the same weekend, against strugglers Wolves.
  • In their last 6 meetings, Aston Villa have won just once against the Gunners.
  • Aston Villa have managed just one win from their last seven outings in all competitions, but are unbeaten in their last three.
  • The two sides have faced each other 183 times, with Arsenal victorious 74 times, compared to Aston Villa's 65, and 44 meetings ending all square.
  • Robin van Persie is the league's leading scorer, notching 26 goals so far this season.


Field Report
Reader's Predictions
Top 3 Predictions
Head to Head
England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Jan 13, 2014 Aston Villa 1 - Arsenal 2
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  • Match Report
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Aug 17, 2013 Arsenal 1 - Aston Villa 3
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  • Match Report
  • Play by Play
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Feb 23, 2013 Arsenal 2 - Aston Villa 1
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  • Play by Play
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Nov 24, 2012 Aston Villa 0 - Arsenal 0
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  • Play by Play
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Mar 24, 2012 Arsenal 3 - Aston Villa 0
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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Wojciech SzczesnyGoalkeeper
28Kieran GibbsDefender
5Thomas VermaelenDefender
5Johan DjourouDefender
3Bacary SagnaDefender
7Tomas RosickyMidfielder
17Alex SongMidfielder
8Mikel ArtetaMidfielder
27GervinhoStriker
20Robin van PersieStriker
14Theo WalcottStriker
21Lukasz FabianskiGoalkeeper
27Andre SantosDefender
25Carl Jenkinson Defender
16Aaron RamseyMidfielder
30Yossi BenayounMidfielder
29Marouane ChamakhStriker
15Alex Oxlade-ChamberlainStriker
31Shay GivenGoalkeeper
6Alan HuttonDefender
13Stephen WarnockDefender
19James CollinsDefender
24Carlos Javier CuéllarDefender
32Stephen IrelandMidfielder
12Marc AlbrightonMidfielder
19Stilian PetrovMidfielder
17Chris HerdMidfielder
11Gabriel AgbonlahorStriker
-Emile HeskeyStriker
1Bradley GuzanGoalkeeper
43Eric LichajDefender
2Nathan BakerDefender
46Barry BannanMidfielder
22Gary GardnerMidfielder
40Samir CarruthersMidfielder
10Andreas WeimannStriker
Players to Watch
Aaron Ramsey
Aaron Ramsey
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 16
Games Goals YC RC
20 8 2 0
The Welshman has struggled to fill the Jack Wilshere void in the midfield this season and had another poor game against Everton with slack passing and poor finishing in front of goal. So, as the cliche goes, he is due a good game. Keep an eye on him against Aston Villa.
Charles N'Zogbia
Charles N'Zogbia
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 0
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
Like with Ramsey, N'Zogbia has struggled for from this season. After, more-or-less, singlehandily keeping Wigan up last season the winger has failed to reproduce the same form under McLeish. However, the Frenchman will no doubt be keen to impress against his one-time admirers after performing well against them in recent seasons.
Prediction
Despite having a rely on a poor refereeing decision to beat Everton on Wednesday, you cannot argue with Arsenal's recent form.

McLeish's men are desperate for points after the relegation-threatened Blackburn and QPR recently picked up points, but they won't be gaining any of their own at the Emirates this weekend.
Editor's Prediction
Results
 
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