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Aston Villa v Arsenal LIVE: Premier League result and reaction after Kai Havertz denied late equaliser

Aston Villa 1-0 Arsenal: John McGinn’s early goal was enough for Unai Emery’s side as they moved to within two points of the top of the table

Harry Latham-Coyle
Saturday 09 December 2023 20:45 GMT
Huge credit to Villa and Emery for their turnaround - Arteta

Aston Villa continued their remarkable home winning run with a gutsy 1-0 win over Arsenal that lifted Unai Emery’s side to within two points of the top of the Premier League table.

Having out-played Manchester City earlier in the week, Villa produced a performance of real defensive strength to hold on after John McGinn’s early goal. The tireless home captain was emblematic of an industrious performance as the visitors suffered a set back in their chase for the title.

Arsenal had been knocked off top spot by Liverpool’s win earlier on Saturday, and missed a series of chances to suffer just a second defeat of the season. With Mikel Arteta watching on from the stands due to a touchline ban, Kai Havertz’s late leveller was ruled out after referee Jarred Gillett deemed the ball to have brushed the midfielder’s hand just before he converted from close range.

And with Aston Villa now just a point behind their opponents after a 15th consecutive home league win, there will be growing belief among the Villa Park faithful that their team can continue to mix it with the established big boys.

Re-live all the action below plus get the latest odds and tips right here:


Arsenal stunned by Unai Emery’s early trick as Aston Villa join the title race

Mikel Arteta looked down from above as his predecessor stole the stage and Aston Villa joined Arsenal in the title race. Unai Emery’s side extended their club-record home winning run to 15 consecutive matches after adding the second of two of the finest victories Villa Park has staged within the same week. Triumphant against the champions on Wednesday, Villa knocked down the side who started the weekend as leaders on Saturday night. Though those wins may share the elements of magnitude and scoreline, they could hardly have been more different in how they were achieved.

Villa’s energy and commitment was superb but Arsenal were wasteful and allowed three points and the chance to extend their lead over Manchester City to slip away. With Arteta suspended from the touchline, Arsenal were unable to produce another late goal and the manager departed the directors box seconds before the final whistle. Moments later, Emery was dancing down the touchline, having beaten the club who sacked him after 18 months for the second time and first since his return to the Premier League.

Arsenal stunned by Unai Emery’s early trick as Aston Villa join the title race

Aston Villa 1-0 Arsenal: John McGinn scored the only goal of the game - but the Gunners had two ruled out

Jamie Braidwood at Villa Park9 December 2023 19:50

Everton offer Mauricio Pochettino’s Chelsea a lesson in how to salvage an expensive mess

A couple of intriguing fixtures on the Premier League docket tomorrow, with Everton vs Chelsea almost impossible to call. Richard Jolly believes that Mauricio Pochettino’s side could learn a thing or two from their hosts, though...

Everton offer Mauricio Pochettino’s Chelsea a lesson in how to salvage a mess

Both clubs have been guilty of overspending in the transfer market and underwhelming on the pitch in recent seasons. But they are going in different directions ahead of their meeting at Goodison Park on Sunday, writes Richard Jolly

Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 20:45

Bournemouth secure first win at Old Trafford as Manchester United produce another horror show

Another disaster of a day for Erik ten Hag and Manchester United - Richard Jolly was on hand to pick through the wreckage of a home trouncing by Bournemouth.

Manchester United’s latest horror show sees nightmare season reach new low

Manchester United 0-3 Bournemouth: Dismal United were blown away by the rampant Cherries as Erik ten Hag’s tenure took another turn for the worse

Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 20:35

The defensive duo that could keep Liverpool top of the table

An imperfect performance, but two of Liverpool’s key leaders stood out. Karl Matchett explains why Alisson and Virgil van Dijk will be vital if Jurgen Klopp’s side are to maintain their title challenge.

Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 20:25

Liverpool go top with win at Crystal Palace

So Arsenal miss out on the chance to go back into first place, with Liverpool spending at least a week top of the Premier League tree. Miguel Delaney was at Selhurst Park to watch another late escape from Jurgen Klopp’s side as a vastly-improved Crystal Palace were beaten.

Unconvincing Liverpool going top sends ominous warning to Premier League title rivals

Crystal Palace 1-2 Liverpool: Mateta’s penalty was cancelled out by Salah before Elliott won it in stoppage time

Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 20:20

Aston Villa beat Arsenal to climb to within two points of Premier League summit

With both having to negotiate midweek European fixtures, it’ll be eight days before these two are back in Premier League action. Aston Villa face a potentially tricky trip to Brentford, while Arsenal host Brighton - who beat them at the Emirates Stadium in May.

Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 20:15

Mikel Arteta on Arsenal’s defeat

“Really good performance,” the Arsenal manager says to Sky Sports. “I thought we were the better team and didn’t deserve to lose the game at all. But that’s football.

“I prefer not to comment [on the Kai Havertz disallowed goal]. I have a big opinion.

“We have to put the ball in the net and that was the only thing we missed today. We had some big, big chances, but still lost the game.

“They are a really good side in a really good moment right now. Congratulations to them.”

Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 20:08

Aston Villa beat Arsenal to move within two points of top spot

Only in the 1980/81 season, when they won the title, have Aston Villa taken more points from the first 16 games of a top flight season.

Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 20:00

Are Aston Villa title contenders?

“I’m banning the T-word!” John McGinn quickly replies to Sky. “It’s gameweek 16, so there’s a long, long way to go. We respect everyone around us who have been in this position for years. We’re newbies. Can we keep it up? I don’t know.

“I think the targets will certainly be revised. Whether that is as ambitious as what you are trying to coax out of me, I don’t know...

“We’ll take a couple of days, we’ve got Thursday in Bosnia to try and get first place in the group, and then re-evaluate for next week at Brentford. Our away form isn’t horrendous but it can be improved.”

Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 19:48

Aston Villa skipper John McGinn on a ‘monumental week’ for his side

McGinn is asked by Sky Sports if he could have had a better week: “It could have got better if we’d beaten Bournemouth! That was a really tough spell for us, we played Thursday, Sunday, Wednesday, Saturday, and I think it showed in our performance today. It wasn’t our best and I think the second half was just about character and grit.

“Fair play to the substitutes. A couple of them came on and haven’t played for a long, long time, but they dug right in there. Arsenal have made a habit of scoring late goals and it was up to us to stay concentrated. What a monumental week it has been for us.

“We had the best of the first 20 minutes up until we scored. They had a lot of the ball, but i don’t think too many clearcut chances. So credit to us, maybe not playing as well as we did on Wednesday night, but that’s a clean sheet against the two best teams in the league, in my opinion. Another huge win.”

(Getty Images)
Harry Latham-Coyle9 December 2023 19:45

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