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Match Report: Arsenal 0-2 Aston Villa

Arsenal’s previous game at the Emirates was a 2-1 over Manchester United. They were firm favourites to win this one as well, unfortunately for the Gunners, it didn’t go to plan.

Boss Arsene Wenger stuck with the same team that beat United, and despite a superb performance from ‘keeper Manuel Almunia, it was Villa who came out the pleased side.

Arsenal Starting XI

Almunia
Sagna – Gallas – Silvestre – Clichy
Walcott – Fabregas – Denilson – Nasri
Diaby
Bendtner

Aston Villa Starting XI

Friedel
Young – Laursen – Davies – Cuellar
Milner – Sidwell – Barry – Young
Petrov – Agbonlahor

First Half

Martin O’Neill’s side got out of the blocks early as A Young fired in a fierce 20-yard shot in the first minute, which Almunia saved well.

Arsenal showed their quality on four as Walcott was released down the right by Denilson but the England winger’s cross-cum-shot flew just wide of Friedel’s left-hand post.

Denilson was booked for a late challenge on Petrov soon after Friedel had done well to collect a Walcott cross from the left.

Friedel managed to get behind a Fabregas drive on 14 but he couldn’t keep hold of the ball. Davies was there to clean up with Gallas looking to pounce.

A Young earnt a penalty for the claret and blue troops four minutes later as he was felled in the area. He then stepped up but his low shot was well saved by Almunia.

Sidwell then broke from midfield but his shot on the turn was too weak to trouble the Arsenal shot-stopper.

A Young showed his array of skills to beat two in midfield on 31 before firing marginally wide of Almunia’s right-hand post. The chance had been created by Sidwell, who was really dominating the central ground with a mixture of skill and grit.

A Young was proving a real handful for the Gunners backline as he again burst forward at pace but his final shot was straight at Almunia, who was being kept very busy.

Barry saw another shot parried by Almunia from close-range as Villa again broke with real quality on 36 minutes.

Petrov’s cracking drive looked to be on target with the clock showing three minutes of the half remaining but the Arsenal defence did well to block the piledriver.

Second Half

The game continued in an open fashion after the break, and Wenger decided he needed extra cutting edge by introducing Adebayor in place of Abou Diaby.

But Villa had a clear game plan – it was to use the pace of Young and Agbonlahor at every opportunity and they continued to threaten on the counter-attack.

They were central figures as Villa got the goal their enterprise deserved with 20 minutes remaining.

Bacary Sagna was down injured as Villa attacked down the right, and when Young whipped in a dangerous cross Agbonlahor pressurised Clichy into heading past Almunia.

Goal: Gael Clichy (O.G – 70) – Arsenal 0-1 Aston Villa

Arsenal were stung into a response, and a minute later Adebayor’s header bounced on to the post and away to safety.

Villa’s threat on the break was even greater as Arsenal pushed in desperation for an equaliser, and it resulted in them doubling their advantage after 80 minutes.

Agbonlahor latched on to a long clearance as Arsenal waited in vain for a free-kick to be given and he shook off the flimsy attentions of William Gallas to beat Almunia with a low shot from the edge of the area.

Goal: Gabriel Agbonlahor (80) – Arsenal 0-2 Aston Villa

It was a terrible Arsenal performance, despite Adebayor’s efforts, the game finished 2-0 to Villa. Arsenal’s title hopes now rely on the top four losing against each other..

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Yousif
Yousif
12 years ago

1st!!!

i say FAB MUST BE LEFT OUT OF A FEW GAMES.

Yousif
Yousif
12 years ago

denilson was excellent
fab was pedestrian
diaby was good
clichy’s worst performance ever maybe?
adebayor was rushed into the team. he aggravated his injury.

Both goals went in when we had a man on the deck. bad ref.

Mr.T
Mr.T
12 years ago

First thing. It was 2-0 not 2-1. From beginning to end we were PISS POOR! So many misplaced passes,movement wasn’t slick and what the fuck is happening to Fabregas??? Well he’s out of the Man. City game hopefully Ramsey gets a start! I felt Denilson was probably our best player,and I’m not a great fan of his but today I felt he was the midfield general.

Phil
Phil
12 years ago

Forget the title!! This Arsenal team will win nothing. What worries me more and more is that we’re not even creating chances.

We were playing the team today that can threaten our chances of Champions League football next season and we looked terrible. Villa outplayed and outclassed us and that worries me.

Yousif
Yousif
12 years ago

i really don’t think anyone had a bad game except for clichy and fab..

fab was wasting the other 10 players’ time.

spurdozer
spurdozer
12 years ago

B*****ite. Cesc should be dropped in favour of ramsey.

Yousif
Yousif
12 years ago

don’t u guys think fab has lost his whatever-it-was?(i even doubt there was really anything there in the first place)..

he’s incapable of adapting his offensive game to work in a double AMF situation. Denilson does. cesc needs flam/gilberto/viera type, wenger is looking more for attacking dynamisn couple with solidity.

caes must learn to grow or get out of the way.

Davi
Davi
12 years ago

its quite a turnaround to start saying cesc is a bad player,
i think the euros might have had something to do with his drop in form
i agree tho if hes playing bad he should be dropped, thats wat’s meant to happen, no one can be indispensible
especially when we have ramsey, merida and wilshere waiting to come in who wont let us down

paddy
paddy
12 years ago

I wouldn’t worry about Villa taking fourth spot. They played well today and we were crap, but remember Villa lost to Newcastle and Boro in their last two games. Today was a bit of a freak for them.
Not to say that we’re good enough to be above fourth.
Wenger needs to rebuild this team. He could start by playing some of the youngsters – Ramsey, Vela, Wilshere, Djourou. At least they give everything.

soccerfanbase.com
soccerfanbase.com
12 years ago

The whole team was poor, Fabregas should be rested, Bendtner should be dashed out as chrismas gift. Diaby is good just as always but he has got to learn how to release the ball on time.

Wenger has to start trusting Jay Simpson and Bendtner and not risking players’ career.

Opera
Opera
12 years ago

what a poor performance from the squad that beat man u last week..
i really think they should rest cecs couples of game because right now he really look out of creativity.
ramsey should be in starting XI for the next game.vela also..
we lost on villa’s counter attack.

jb
jb
12 years ago

What utter tripe yousif. Your words confirm simply your own lack of knowledge about the game. Cesc was world class the second he stepped foot in the team at 16. And is our best player by a long distance. The blame for four losses in 13, lies squarely with the fact that despite coming up short last season, our squad was weakened, rather than strengthened in the summer. The captaincy issue was never addressed, and the glaring gap in central midfield was left exposed in what must be the most glaring mistake wenger has ever made. Simply put, the team… Read more »

paul delaney
paul delaney
12 years ago

fabregas should b dropped r u mad i admit he has been well off hes game this season but we cant drop our best player, we hav 2 many players who r just not gud enough 2 win us a title, gallas silvestre denilson bendtner almunia, that performance 2day was dreadfull we really was awfull after a great performance last wk, wat chance hav we got of winning the prem this yr none were already out of it 11 games in we hav lost 4 this is looking like its gonna turn in2 the worst season since arsene wenger joined… Read more »

Fabregas' Dad
Fabregas' Dad
12 years ago

Yousif’s got everything pretty much spot on.

paul delaney
paul delaney
12 years ago

JB ur comments r spot on i myself am worried fabregas will leave next yr everything u said was right.

Fabregas' Dad
Fabregas' Dad
12 years ago

Oh great, here come the people who refuse to believe that Cesc and Clichy can do any wrong and start blaming the likes of Almunia, Gallas and Denilson who were probably our best players today.

Fabregas' Dad
Fabregas' Dad
12 years ago

It’s hard to see Fabregas being dropped but he’s been rubbish for the last 3 weeks or so. Against Man City we’ll see what we’re like without him, I just hope we don’t start Song and Denilson together though because they’re both defensively minded (even Denilson) and Diaby’s passing isn’t good enough to play at centre midfield and Wenger clearly doesn’t want to play him there, so I hope Ramsey gets a chance with Denilson. Having said that he’s still only 17 and we shouldn’t be in a position where we can’t drop players because their replacement is only 17…

soccerfanbase.com
soccerfanbase.com
12 years ago

I am not saying Fabregas should be dropped finally but should be rested, he needs som drilling in order to regain his form, he is not super human and deserves some rest.

Gunners
Gunners
12 years ago

Fabregas will never perform with players, like denilson, fabregas can change a match on his own, like they said fabregas need flamini to play well, yes when denilson is playing many midfielders close down on him so he doesnt get enough space to play. As they know that denilson cannot do anything on his own and so he receive some space. if flamini were there he would surely remove us from this as he would get the spaces that denilson is receiving.

Gunners
Gunners
12 years ago

Thus fabregas doesnt receive too many spaces to play like he want.

harsh1l
harsh1l
12 years ago

one name, “BENDTNER”, im flabargasted he has the nerve to put on an arsenal shirt on, surely he must know himself he is not good to play for arsenal,his indecision making is phenomenal at this level. can someone explain to me what wenger sees in him, wengre and his staff must surely goin through the tapes after each match and in the past lets say 10 games he’s started,how has he contributed to the team, apart from goin for balls and comitting fouls or being in a decent position and slowing down the game, doesnt wenger realise he is plain… Read more »

HARBO
12 years ago

hands up who knew villa would beat us today. i and everyone i talked to did. the reason is that this team are abig time charlie team who only turn up for big matches . even then the they give about 70 minutes then usually bottle out. remember brum , utd . cheelsea ,liverpool last season. i could probably think of another few but my heads fuked at the minute . in 40 years supporting arsenal ive never seen such a cowardly passionless bunch of players. utd didnt win the league last season this bunch of pansies threw it a… Read more »

Yousif
Yousif
12 years ago

i agree, bendtner had his chance today and didn’t take it.

denilson is more tallented and passionate than cesc. he’s just under the fab’s shadow. cesc is NOTHING SPECIAL, he’s a squad member and should be rotated if he’s not able to create. denilson and diaby or denilson and ramsey is the way to go next match. wenger can just replay today’s match for him and he will admit it himself.

Kanye14
Kanye14
12 years ago

Wat the hel was Bendtner doing? He can’t play lone striker. Y play 451 against villa against Utd its understandable!! Lets hope we up our game after xmas. atleast eduardo will b back and that means goals wil be back. GOONER 4 LIFE!!!

Brett
Brett
12 years ago

gooner 4 life!
butt
winnin nuffin this season
affraid to say!
need to buy end of!
this squad jus isnt as strong as the other top 3!
wen the likes of aston villa go to old trafford you fink, tough game but utd will win hands down, same wid chelsea an same wid liverpool!
but with arsenal! i feel any team has a chance to win us! even west brom, stoke anyone!
WHY
this is not right!
SORT IT b4 we are in the UEFA CUP wenger!

Davi
Davi
12 years ago

i dont see why fabregas cant be dropped im not saying hes a bad player but hes clearly lost some form ramsey looks the part, hes technically on the same level and much stronger than cesc all he lacks is experience u cant say its denilson’s fault cesc isnt playing well because by all accounts denilson was out best player today, and last week, in fact for the first 5 matches of the season he was excellent as well. i really dont want to start something against fabregas, but if hes not playing well, someone else should get a chance.… Read more »

Davi
Davi
12 years ago

theres nothing wrong with the squad its the first team
our squad is huge

jp
jp
12 years ago

Lets face it, today we just weren’t good enough. Villa played as team, we didn’t, it happens! We have got results before ’cause other teams have haven’t turned up. Villa are a quality team who outplayed us, we were lucky it was only 2. Good luck to villa, they are a on team on the up and are going places andy are going to push us for 4th place!

Yousif
Yousif
12 years ago

lemme clarify my comments bout cesc. He has a fantastic record, is perhaps our most sought-after player, is seen as the team’s talisman, and has arguably the best assist record of any current club player. But arsenal is a squad not a team, and i do not for one moment accept that Cesc is the ONLY player who can do the AMF position justice. Diaby can replace him. Denilson can replace him. Nasri can replace him. Ramsey can replace him. Wilshire CAN replace him. MErida probably could to, with a few more games. HE’s not doing anything special these days,… Read more »

HARBO
12 years ago

yeh paddy it was a freak that we lost to villa today. wats the excuse for hull , fulham , stoke . those modern day giants of the game

HARBO
12 years ago

ur right . fabregas can change a game on his own . he was the worst player by a mile agains stoke hull villa and fulham . he changed the game cause he might as well of being hull fulham villa and hulls best player. enough of this shit about it being dennilsons fault fabregas is not playing well. Dennilsons been carrying this fraud all season

The Brain
12 years ago

It seems fabregas was no way impacted by Denilson . In fact the movement in front of him was poor and dare I say it the players. That’s all. He’s got the goods but he needs better players to express that. More cutting edge is required from the side such as Hleb, Van Persie or even Ramsey and Wilshere.

HARBO
12 years ago

bolox the brain . it wasnt dennilson who pulled out a tackle at the edge of the villa box that led to the second goal. it was golden boy fabregas.fabregas has lost any pace he had this season. he needs time on the ball and other teams know that so they put a man tight on him which renders him useless because he aint got the pace or physical strengh to deal with it . i think deep down fabregas knows he s been found out in this league . teams have sussed him out. i think next year u… Read more »

DANIEL
DANIEL
12 years ago

WHY ARE MAN U AND CHELSEA’S REJECTS OUR BEST CENTER BACKS???
GALLAS AND BENDTNAR ARE USELESS,THE SQUAD IS RUBBISH, FLAMINI HAS NOT BEEN REPLACED,WHERE IS THE MONEY?????????I’D RATHER BE AT HIGHBURY WITH A GREAT SQUAD THAN AT THE EMIRATES- LOOK AT MILLWALL.
I THINK WENGERS HANDS ARE TIED.LET US BE IN DEBT LIKE CHELSEA, AT LEAST WE’D HAVE A FEW LEAGUE TITLES TO GO WITH IT.

akshat
akshat
12 years ago

let me put this right fabregas has been world class ever since hes stepped onto the field.i agree hes lost his form but the fact is hes been playing the most no of games 4 arsenal 4 the last 3 seasons and thus quite simply deserves sme rest. i saw smebody wrote that he needs sme time on the ball.welllllllll MR get a check up 4 ur eyes……..coz when people say hed got great vision it means,he sees that visionary ball thru defenses the EARLIEST(watch the game against porto) coming to arsene wenger.he has been saying 4 the last 3… Read more »

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