Game #5598

2020-21

Position:

6th (+2)

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Premier League

Arsenal

Emirates Stadium

Attendance: Behind closed doors (COVID-19)

Sunday, 8 November 2020

Villa bounce back from successive defeats to hammer Arsenal at the Emirates.

Arsenal

0-3

Aston Villa

Scorer(s) | Bakary Saka o.g. | 25' | Ollie Watkins | 72' | 75' |

Assist(s) | Ross Barkley | 72' | Jack Grealish | 75' |

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AT A GLANCE

Game #5598

Season | 2020-21 |
Matchday | #10 |
League Match | #7 |
Manager Game | #94 |
Sunday, 8 November 2020

MATCH SUMMARY

Manager | Dean Smith |
KO | 7.15pm |
Referee | Martin Atkinson |
HT Score | 1-0 |
FT Result | 3-0 |
FT Score | Won |
Last 5 Games | WWLLW |
League Position | 6th | +1 |

TEAM STATS

Team Cost:
| £141.44m |

Starting XI Average Age:
| 25.37 |

Oldest Player:
GK Emiliano Martínez | 28.20 |

Youngest Player:
M Douglas Luiz | 22.52 |

TEAM NEWS

Dean Smith makes one change from the team that lost to Southampton, replacing the injured Bertrand Traoré with Trézéguet.

Left back Neil Taylor returns to the bench after a 4 game absence, whilst Anwar El Ghazi returns after 2 games out of contention with centre back Björn Engels dropping out.

UNAVAILABLE

Not Selected | 6 |
GK Lovre Kalinić |
RB Frédéric Guilbert |
CB Björn Engels |
CB Kortney Hause |
M Henri Lansbury |
M Jacob Ramsey |

Injury | 3 |
Tom Heaton | Knee, ACL 1 Jan 20 - 1 Jan 21 |
Wesley | Knee, ACL 1 Jan 20 - 1 Jan 21 |
Bertrand Traoré | Groin, 1 Nov 20 - 21 Nov 20 |

MATCH STATS

Possession F | 41%
Possession A | 59%
Shots F | 15
Shots A | 13
Shots on Target F | 6
Shots on Target A | 2
Corners F | 8
Corners A | 3
Fouls F | 13
Fouls A | 11

MATCH PROGRAMME

LEAGUE TABLE

STARTING LINE UP

GK Emiliano Martínez |
RB Matty Cash |
CB Tyrone Mings |
CB Ezri Konsa |
LB Matt Targett |
M Jack Grealish |
M John McGinn |
M Ross Barkley |
M Douglas Luiz |
W Trézéguet |
CF Ollie Watkins |

SUBSTITUTES

W Anwar El Ghazi for W Trézéguet | 88' |

UNUSED SUBSTITUTES

GK Jed Steer
LB Neil Taylor
RB Ahmed Elmohamady
M Conor Hourihane
M Marvelous Nakamba
CF Keinan Davis

THE OPPOSITION

GK Bernd Leno, RB Héctor Bellerín, LB Kieran Tierney, CB Gabriel, CB Rob Holding, W Bukayo Saka, M Thomas Partey (M Dani Ceballos), M Mohamed Elneny, CF Alexandre Lacazette (W Nicolas Pépé), W Willian (CF Eddie Nketiah), CF Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Manager: Mikel Arteta.
Team Cost: £306.68m
Homegrown Players: 3

ex: Also played for the Villa

g: Scored

s/o: Sent off

s-: Sub off; s+: Sub on

Ollie Watkins hits a brace as Villa vanquish Arsenal, 8 November 2020

https://www.premierleague.com/match/58966

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MATCH TIMELINE

25’ Goal, 1-0, Bakary Saka o.g.
HT Arsenal 0-1 Aston Villa
72’ Goal, 2-0, Ollie Watkins, Assist by Ross Barkley
75’ Goal, 3-0, Ollie Watkins, Assist by Jack Grealish
88’ Sub off, W Trézéguet, Sub on, W Anwar El Ghazi
FT Arsenal 0-3 Aston Villa

ON THIS DAY

22 Year old Brazilian international midfielder Douglas Luiz made his 50th appearance for Villa.

Villa had now won their first three away league games in a season for the first time in their history.

Ollie Watkins had now scored six goals in his first seven Premier League appearances for Villa. The only other players to net as many in their first seven Premier League matches for Villa were Dion Dublin (9) in 1998-99 and Dean Saunders (7) in 1992-93.

Villa became the third side in the history of the Premier League to win each of their first three away games in a season without conceding a goal after Chelsea in 2005-06 and Manchester City in 2015-16.

QUOTES

*Two-goal scorer Ollie Watkins*
*Sunday 8 November 2020*

"It's a good three points here against a good side at the Emirates. We know they would pass and move it and we had to cut off the lines in midfield and I felt we did that and it gave us freedom to go and play.

​"We've conceded a few goals the last couple of games and it's how you bounce back and we've done that tonight.

​"I'm loving it [at Aston Villa]. There obviously may be some pressure, new signing and everyone wants you to perform but I just need to get my head down and get the goals."

​How much more there is to come from Villa: "I think a lot, you've seen tonight and against Liverpool, we're a great side and we can beat anyone."

"We came out and had a great start, the disallowed goal we were very unlucky for the offside. Against a great team, we had to get our shape right and we did that tonight.

​On the disallowed goal: "To be fair I thought he was in the way of the keeper but I don’t think he would’ve saved it either way, I thought it was harsh. You know when it goes to VAR it's not good news but I thought we dealt with it well.

​On relationships within team: "We work on it in training, Jack Grealish is unbelievable on the ball I just have to make a run and hopefully the ball will come and he does find me more often than not so just got to keep making the runs and the goals will come.

​On whether he's reached full potential yet: "I think I have another level in the second half you saw what I’m about, getting the ball, setting and spinning and making defenders run towards their own goal, that’s what I’m about so hopefully the more I can do that the more goals I can score."
---
*Villa boss Dean Smith*
*Sunday 8 November 2020*

"It's a really pleasing performance. Lots of facets to it. It was a good defensive shift from the whole team. We caused them problems with some of our counter attacking.

​"We didn't want them to have a nice easy game where they could pass it where they wanted. They're a good team.

​"A lot better than last season [on their away form]. We couldn't keep a clean sheet last season. We've kept three from three this time.

​"We're a threat with them [the attacking players] in the team. Really pleasing. They're all blossoming really well but there's more to come from them."

"We set the tone from the off - the ball went out for a throw-in and we showed intensity and that we were going to press them. From that throw-in we won the ball back and John McGinn scored a great goal which got chalked off.

​"A big win at Leicester winning 1-0, it's a tough league so wherever you go it's tough. Coming here is tough, we knew we had to be at our best without the ball. That's what pleased me the most and we could've scored more. We created some great chances from our ball carrying skills with Jack Grealish and Ross Barkley and Trezequet and Ollie Watkins' non-stop running.

​"We weren't satisfied with how last season ended, we finished 17th - we know that first season is always tough. We've added some quality to the squad, five players have come in which makes us look a strong team - we're competitive and that's where we want to be. You have to be in this league because it's tough as we found out against Southampton and Leeds before this game.

​"I think good players always click, they get on a wavelength quickly and they look like they're on that wavelength together. You can't underestimate the work they do off the ball as well.

​"We have to take each game as it comes and that's all we can do and want to do. We won our first four of the season and got our first bloody nose against Leeds so it can happen if you're not at it and the players know it that you have to be at it right from the off."

Dean Smith on the (lack of) five substitutes rule:

"I've only made one change in the 88th minute today - for me the intensity was there for my players and we don't have the biggest squad in the world so we have to manage our players.

​"I can sympathise with teams in Europe but there's some big squads out there and I've made my feelings known from the off that I thought we were right to stay with the three subs rule and now we've started with it we should certainly continue with it."
---

VIDEO

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​*BBC Sport*
*Sunday 8 November 2020*

"​​It was Villa who always looked the most likely to score and they could have won by an even bigger margin."

*BBC Sport*
*Sunday 8 November 2020*

MATCH REPORT

MATCH REPORTS

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​Ollie Watkins scored twice as Aston Villa claimed an impressive victory at Arsenal and moved up to sixth in the Premier League.

The visitors took the lead midway through the first half when Bukayo Saka turned Matt Targett's cross into his own net.

Watkins, who scored a hat-trick in a 7-2 win against champions Liverpool earlier this season, made it 2-0 with a header towards the end of the second half and scored his second soon after, slotting the ball under Bernd Leno after a quick break.

The Gunners had gone into this game looking to build on their impressive 1-0 win against Manchester United last time out, but despite dominating possession they created very little, with Alexandre Lacazette going closest when he headed over Kieran Tierney's cross.

Instead, it was Villa who always looked the most likely to score and they could have won by an even bigger margin.

​The visitors had a goal ruled out inside the first minute when John McGinn thumped home Jack Grealish's cross.

However, after a lengthy check by the video assistant referee, it was ruled out as Ross Barkley, who was in an offside position, was adjudged to have been in goalkeeper Leno's way.

Egypt midfielder Trezeguet forced a good save from Leno early in the second half before the Arsenal keeper denied Grealish at the near post with a strong hand, while the Aston Villa captain also had an effort cleared off the line.

​Defeat leaves an inconsistent Arsenal 11th in the table while the win maintained Villa's 100% away record so far this season.

​Villa back to their best after mini-slump

​Villa made a superb start to this season with a run of four successive wins that included eye-catching victories against Liverpool and Leicester.

​Back-to-back defeats against Leeds and Southampton - games in which they conceded a total of seven goals - raised concerns that their excellent start may have been a false dawn, but this performance will have significantly eased some of those fears.

​Boss Dean Smith said before kick-off that he believed the team he had put out possessed the attacking quality to hurt Arsenal and so it proved, particularly in the second half when they looked capable of scoring with every break.

​Villa have now won five of their seven games so far this season and having taken some significant scalps already, there is every reason for their fans to be optimistic.

​Misfiring Arsenal pay the price

​This defeat will prove particularly concerning for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, who appeared to have rectified issues with a defence that conceded goals far too easily last season.

​Going into the match they boasted the Premier League's best defence, having conceded just seven goals in seven games, and it was the Gunners' struggles at the other end of the pitch that Arteta would have been hoping to see an improvement in.

​But once again the hosts lacked creativity and managed just two shots on target all game, neither of which posed any real danger to their former goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez.

​As pleasing as the performance in the 1-0 win against Manchester United was, this result underlined Arsenal's attacking problems when the defence has an off day.
---
​*The Guardian*
*Sunday 8 November 2020*

​Ollie Watkins punishes woeful Arsenal as Aston Villa run riot at the Emirates

​The pivotal period of this game, you felt, came around an hour in. Arsenal were knocking at the door in search of an equaliser. Crosses came and went. Chances whistled past either post. For a while, it felt like Aston Villa might have to settle in for a long and painful rearguard. At which point, they seemed to come to a crucial realisation. They were better than Arsenal. And so in a rampant, crushing climax, they set about proving it.

​As Jack Grealish and Ross Barkley began to run the game on strings, as Ollie Watkins picked off the two goals that would turn a victory into a rout, Arsenal were stripped bare again and again, beaten not just on tactics and technique but on application. Marshalled by Tyrone Mings at the back, orchestrated by Douglas Luiz in midfield and brilliantly drilled by manager Dean Smith, Villa won their duels and won their second balls, leaving Arsenal choking in their dust.

​For Mikel Arteta, a long-awaited reckoning. Clutch wins against big teams have helped to reinforce the impression of a team in chrysalis, building from strong foundations, and perhaps allowed the odd rough night. But this was something else. Presented with a clearly underperforming side, Arteta was powerless to affect the flow, powerless to change the game, powerless to inspire.

​This defeat slips them back into the bottom half of the table and the time for excuses, you feel, is over. They were given an early reprieve by VAR before falling behind to a Bukayo Saka own goal. Yet the reaction never materialised. The front three were abject. The substitutes were little better. From front to back, from last whistle to first, they were simply outplayed.

​Barely had the strains of the Last Post evaporated than Aston Villa were celebrating a goal. With the clock showing 45 seconds, John McGinn smashed the ball into the top corner after some good work by Grealish on the left wing. And yet again, technology would have the final say. Barkley, standing in an offside position, was adjudged to have impeded the sightline of Bernd Leno, even if McGinn’s shot was so powerfully struck that Leno would merely have enjoyed a marginally better view of the ball flying past him.

​Villa, naturally, were incensed. For Arsenal, an unexpected early bonus: all the shock therapy of conceding an early goal without the inconvenience of actually going behind. And yet, if McGinn’s disallowed goal was an early warning it went unheeded: despite boasting plenty of possession there was a curious looseness to them at both ends of the pitch. On 25 minutes Villa had the ball in the net again, and this time it would count.

​Again it sprang from Grealish and Barkley teasing the ball between themselves on the left wing, unrushed and unconfronted, waiting for an opening to emerge. It came via Matt Targett, who darted to the byline and crossed. Bukayo Saka nipped in just ahead of Trezeguet, but could only prod the ball goalwards.

​On the touchline, you could sense Arteta’s sap beginning to rise. Never the most relaxed of coaches at the best of times, as the game progressed Arteta began to take an even more terrifyingly proactive role: not simply cajoling but commanding, screaming exactly where he wanted each pass delivered. Not that it seemed to do much good. Back on the pitch, Lacazette beamed a header badly over the bar.

​Dani Ceballos replaced the injured Thomas Partey at half-time. It was, perhaps, an attempt to give Arsenal’s midfield a little more range and craft, a few more gears. And though Ceballos played some nice passes and curled a shot wide early in the second half, the pattern of the game remained largely unaltered: Arsenal predictably funnelling the ball up the flanks and occasionally getting caught on the break. Grealish slashed a shot just wide. Rob Holding, of all people, had the best of Arsenal’s chances.

​As desperation took hold, the terrible Willian and the ineffective Alexandre Lacazette took their leave, replaced by Nicolas Pépé and Eddie Nketiah. Yet as Arsenal regrouped, Villa made the game safe, displaying the directness and cutting edge that had eluded Arsenal all evening.

​With 20 minutes left, Luiz picked out a terrific diagonal ball; Watkins headed in Barkley’s brilliant volleyed cross from two yards. Four minutes later, the final insult: an Arsenal attack broke down and as their disinterested players jogged back into position, Grealish set Watkins clear, the finish fired in hard and low to crown a sparkling, resounding triumph.
---

​Ollie Watkins scored twice as Aston Villa claimed an impressive victory at Arsenal and moved up to sixth in the Premier League.

The visitors took the lead midway through the first half when Bukayo Saka turned Matt Targett's cross into his own net.

Watkins, who scored a hat-trick in a 7-2 win against champions Liverpool earlier this season, made it 2-0 with a header towards the end of the second half and scored his second soon after, slotting the ball under Bernd Leno after a quick break.

The Gunners had gone into this game looking to build on their impressive 1-0 win against Manchester United last time out, but despite dominating possession they created very little, with Alexandre Lacazette going closest when he headed over Kieran Tierney's cross.

Instead, it was Villa who always looked the most likely to score and they could have won by an even bigger margin.

​The visitors had a goal ruled out inside the first minute when John McGinn thumped home Jack Grealish's cross.

However, after a lengthy check by the video assistant referee, it was ruled out as Ross Barkley, who was in an offside position, was adjudged to have been in goalkeeper Leno's way.

Egypt midfielder Trezeguet forced a good save from Leno early in the second half before the Arsenal keeper denied Grealish at the near post with a strong hand, while the Aston Villa captain also had an effort cleared off the line.

​Defeat leaves an inconsistent Arsenal 11th in the table while the win maintained Villa's 100% away record so far this season.

​Villa back to their best after mini-slump

​Villa made a superb start to this season with a run of four successive wins that included eye-catching victories against Liverpool and Leicester.

​Back-to-back defeats against Leeds and Southampton - games in which they conceded a total of seven goals - raised concerns that their excellent start may have been a false dawn, but this performance will have significantly eased some of those fears.

​Boss Dean Smith said before kick-off that he believed the team he had put out possessed the attacking quality to hurt Arsenal and so it proved, particularly in the second half when they looked capable of scoring with every break.

​Villa have now won five of their seven games so far this season and having taken some significant scalps already, there is every reason for their fans to be optimistic.

​Misfiring Arsenal pay the price

​This defeat will prove particularly concerning for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, who appeared to have rectified issues with a defence that conceded goals far too easily last season.

​Going into the match they boasted the Premier League's best defence, having conceded just seven goals in seven games, and it was the Gunners' struggles at the other end of the pitch that Arteta would have been hoping to see an improvement in.

​But once again the hosts lacked creativity and managed just two shots on target all game, neither of which posed any real danger to their former goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez.

​As pleasing as the performance in the 1-0 win against Manchester United was, this result underlined Arsenal's attacking problems when the defence has an off day.
---
​*The Guardian*
*Sunday 8 November 2020*

​Ollie Watkins punishes woeful Arsenal as Aston Villa run riot at the Emirates

​The pivotal period of this game, you felt, came around an hour in. Arsenal were knocking at the door in search of an equaliser. Crosses came and went. Chances whistled past either post. For a while, it felt like Aston Villa might have to settle in for a long and painful rearguard. At which point, they seemed to come to a crucial realisation. They were better than Arsenal. And so in a rampant, crushing climax, they set about proving it.

​As Jack Grealish and Ross Barkley began to run the game on strings, as Ollie Watkins picked off the two goals that would turn a victory into a rout, Arsenal were stripped bare again and again, beaten not just on tactics and technique but on application. Marshalled by Tyrone Mings at the back, orchestrated by Douglas Luiz in midfield and brilliantly drilled by manager Dean Smith, Villa won their duels and won their second balls, leaving Arsenal choking in their dust.

​For Mikel Arteta, a long-awaited reckoning. Clutch wins against big teams have helped to reinforce the impression of a team in chrysalis, building from strong foundations, and perhaps allowed the odd rough night. But this was something else. Presented with a clearly underperforming side, Arteta was powerless to affect the flow, powerless to change the game, powerless to inspire.

​This defeat slips them back into the bottom half of the table and the time for excuses, you feel, is over. They were given an early reprieve by VAR before falling behind to a Bukayo Saka own goal. Yet the reaction never materialised. The front three were abject. The substitutes were little better. From front to back, from last whistle to first, they were simply outplayed.

​Barely had the strains of the Last Post evaporated than Aston Villa were celebrating a goal. With the clock showing 45 seconds, John McGinn smashed the ball into the top corner after some good work by Grealish on the left wing. And yet again, technology would have the final say. Barkley, standing in an offside position, was adjudged to have impeded the sightline of Bernd Leno, even if McGinn’s shot was so powerfully struck that Leno would merely have enjoyed a marginally better view of the ball flying past him.

​Villa, naturally, were incensed. For Arsenal, an unexpected early bonus: all the shock therapy of conceding an early goal without the inconvenience of actually going behind. And yet, if McGinn’s disallowed goal was an early warning it went unheeded: despite boasting plenty of possession there was a curious looseness to them at both ends of the pitch. On 25 minutes Villa had the ball in the net again, and this time it would count.

​Again it sprang from Grealish and Barkley teasing the ball between themselves on the left wing, unrushed and unconfronted, waiting for an opening to emerge. It came via Matt Targett, who darted to the byline and crossed. Bukayo Saka nipped in just ahead of Trezeguet, but could only prod the ball goalwards.

​On the touchline, you could sense Arteta’s sap beginning to rise. Never the most relaxed of coaches at the best of times, as the game progressed Arteta began to take an even more terrifyingly proactive role: not simply cajoling but commanding, screaming exactly where he wanted each pass delivered. Not that it seemed to do much good. Back on the pitch, Lacazette beamed a header badly over the bar.

​Dani Ceballos replaced the injured Thomas Partey at half-time. It was, perhaps, an attempt to give Arsenal’s midfield a little more range and craft, a few more gears. And though Ceballos played some nice passes and curled a shot wide early in the second half, the pattern of the game remained largely unaltered: Arsenal predictably funnelling the ball up the flanks and occasionally getting caught on the break. Grealish slashed a shot just wide. Rob Holding, of all people, had the best of Arsenal’s chances.

​As desperation took hold, the terrible Willian and the ineffective Alexandre Lacazette took their leave, replaced by Nicolas Pépé and Eddie Nketiah. Yet as Arsenal regrouped, Villa made the game safe, displaying the directness and cutting edge that had eluded Arsenal all evening.

​With 20 minutes left, Luiz picked out a terrific diagonal ball; Watkins headed in Barkley’s brilliant volleyed cross from two yards. Four minutes later, the final insult: an Arsenal attack broke down and as their disinterested players jogged back into position, Grealish set Watkins clear, the finish fired in hard and low to crown a sparkling, resounding triumph.
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