Arsenal vs Aston Villa live brought to you by Europcar

Afternoon one and all and welcome to Sunday’s Premier League early KO at the Emirates. It’s Arsenal vs Aston Villa brought to by the lovely folk at Europcar – Arsenal’s Official Car and Van Rental Partner.

It’s four wins on the bounce now for Arsene Wenger’s men who return to Premier League action for the first time since a particularly impressive away win at champions Manchester City.

Last time out the Gunners put Brighton & Hove Albion to the sword in the FA Cup Fourth Round, with goals-a-piece for returning duo Mesut Ozil and Theo Walcott. With impressive performances all around of late, it’s fair to say Arsene Wenger has a selection headache for the visit of the Premier League’s fifteenth-placed team.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Hector Bellerin will face late fitness tests for the Gunners, while longer-term absentees Mikel Arteta, Jack Wilshere and Danny Welbeck remain sidelined.

Follow all the action, reaction and social media buzz from Arsenal vs Aston Villa LIVE, right here:

Europcar Live Blog

97 Replies to “Arsenal vs Aston Villa live brought to you by Europcar”

  1. Great pass by Ozil and he should have had a goal as well! Ref taking away another onside goal by Arsenal

  2. Ozil scores, lineman flags for offside which replays show he wasn’t. Walcott flagged offside, no replay. Benteke heads the ball out of play, but villa are awarded a corner. Again no replay. I see a pattern developing…

  3. The thing I don’t get is why did they take 10 seconds before saying it was offside? cause the ball went into the goal?

  4. Had to pop out so foolishly listened to Talk Sport in the car – Collymore and Matterface… ugh – if it had been Chelsea, if it had been Man City that would be 3

    Perfectly good goal ruled out but the PPP elect not to mention that – not one mention of the elbow Giroud took.

    Not to mention all that talking but not about the game that’s actually in progress…

    Must hurry back home…

  5. Yyyeeeeaaahhhhh

    Ozil with a goal and an assist.

    Nicking a living!!!….
    Yeah big time.

  6. Even a blind man can see this ref wants villa to get something out of this game. Yes!!! Theo!!

  7. @Va Cong
    yes, looks like he did get some of ball, i just went from his body language and the first clip.

  8. Arsenal 13 well its like 3-0 already he should just do the job he was supposed to do in the first place! lol

  9. Can not understand why are there no pundits, for almost 10 minutes in the second half guys say nothing and in the first half they where allover.

  10. Superb goal by Bellerin. Akpom looks lively, and pretty quick! Good performance despite a dodgy ref. The Arsenal juggernaut continues. COYG!!

  11. That ‘one man’ teams seems to of managed pretty well without…….well, that ‘one man’ 🙂

  12. Absolute great game! Almost like watching footbal p*rn. Congratulations to hector for his first goal. Commentators were spouting bullsh*t all game and made fun of our sleeve tradition, again. Can we file a complaint on that?

  13. AL

    I agree, Akpom looks very promising.




    All looking very very promoising.

    Perhaps Wenger does know what he’s doing after all.

    Great performance.

  14. I was hoping Akpom would score! Then that would calm him down as he was trying to hard. Composure will come! 😀

  15. First I would like to thank Villa (bar that C.Sanchez) for such a clean game.

    finally Bellerin gets on the score sheet. Akpom should have followed. Ozil, what the heck was that assist? And Giroud, MOTM?
    Just for tGe record, Ozil was on thw wings 😉

  16. Absolute miracle the cheat had to give the pen!!!

    Cazorla booooooom!

    Good game but we missed soooooo many.

    Taylor was bad but despite his cheating we walloped them. Eat your heart out Andy Townsend.

  17. Well people if you remember last week I mentioned the horrid antics of some vile perpetrators against my under 11s, well league still haven’t come back to our club and parents can’t believe it, all this child safety promotion can go where the sun don’t shine.

  18. Excellent result from a great game of football. Absolutely enjoyed it.

    Many congratulations to Hector for scoring his first competitive senior goal for Arsenal. That boy’s future is bright indeed.

  19. Ozil gave a masterclass and so impressed with Coquelin. Pleased for Bellerin… It’s nice to see a kid so delighted with his first goal… It’s refreshing compared to the usual modern day footballer.

  20. I remember it being said that facing the invincibles in full flight was like facing the Red Arrows.

    I would like to think that bit by bit we are returning to those Halcion days

  21. Just got home, I want to echo jayramfootball’s statements on Mesut Oezil, was so pleased when he scored, people sitting above me were constantly slagging him off EVEN THOUGH HE SET UP AND SCORED A GOAL!! When he scored I went mad at them and told them to stop complaining – seriously, which other club would have fans who moan at having 2 of the world’s best players on their books (Oezil and Sanchez!)!?!? What would they have made of David Hillier who was the half time guest at the match…

  22. I thought Taylor the arse-wipe had a good game. Seems like an unpopular verdict:) No cards and one penalty…think that’s our 6th in about 8 games…so maybe UA’s efforts are having an effect. Long may it continue. Be interested to see what Walter thought.

  23. If we can stay injury free, I think we can make a double (Uefa CL and FA Cup). Adding the top 4 finish.

  24. Great result, Coquelin was superb, I would love to see has stats for this game.
    Walter, can you attend all our games, I think you have a 100% win record do you not? Mrs B also brought us luck, biggest Prem League score for 2 years.

  25. Wow! What an excellent performance from the team of all stars! A great win that even Taylor could not diminish.

    Really really like Bellerin, even without his goal he would have been a star today – a great young talent.

    Well done the team and manager!

  26. I’m curious to see the referee’s review of this match. The ref seemed to let somethings go but they did not change the result of the match. Can’t wait for next weekend.

  27. Yipeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!
    I told you guys to relax that as long as Walter is in the Emirates Std., we are sure to win. We only need to motivate Walter to always attend our home matches ( most especially against the Bus parkers)
    I feel the referee’s review being done on here is REALLY working. I bet this is the best performance of A.Taylor in an Arsenal match and I believe it has a correlation with the pressure on here. (Maybe he about the coming of a senior ref to the stadium and decides to adjust his performance)
    A five star performance today. Happy for Bellerin.
    Of course we are a ‘one-man’ team! That man, his name is Arsene Wenger! COYG

  28. Superb team performance. All of them, the headline makers, the returnees, the new boys, and the unsung heroes like Monreal.
    Coquelin really adds to the structure of this team, hope reports we have tied him down are correct, but if for whatever reason we do not, we know the sort of players we will need this summer.
    This is becoming a very very dangerous team. There have been…relatively…dark days this season when injuries, and unfamiliarity hindered creativity, and we seemed a bit ponderous and predictable, and shaky at the back. Doesn’t seem that way at the moment though.
    Huge credit to the team and coaches for the direction in which we seem to be heading.
    A mason or swarbrick might well be appointed to do their worst against us at spurs, but this team give the impression they can now handle such things.

  29. Southampton now down to 10 men.

    Bertram Off for very poor high challenge.

    Into added time.

  30. Southampton now down to 10 men.

    Bertram Off for very poor high challenge.

    Into time added on.

  31. This is the second consecutive League game where Taylor, a normally inept referee, who cost us the same fixture last season, did nothing really anti-Arsenal. In the Man Citeh game, Dean behaved likewise.
    Being the cynic that I am, I can only assume that “Our Walter” has taken over the Ferguson pocket and next Christmas, a few hampers of delicious Belgian goodies will wend their way to the good old UK.

  32. Arsenal 13

    At the end of the season, fine detail makes a difference as statistically teams seldom show they are unambiguously in whatever position. Even Leicester will not show they are unambiguously last.

    Hence, we are free to say that we are joint 3rd, as 3/4/5 are the same in terms of points and goal difference. The 6th place is probably the same on points (7th may be), but neither 6 or 7 is the same on goal difference.

    Hence, I suggest we celebrate being in 3rd, not 4th.

    And I really don’t know how Swansea did it. They decided to get rid of all potential to score, do they really intend to park the bus for another 15 games to get another 15 points? mind you, they probably only need 7 to survive.


  33. Nicky
    Giroud was elbowed twice by the same player and the offender didn’t even get a card.

    I didn’t watch the Southampton game but can see there was a total of 7 minutes of added on time. Not sure if there were stoppages to justify this, but I also noticed there was only three minutes in our match despite two goals scored in second half as well as six substitutions, all in the second half. Think this demonstrates that injury time is easy to, and often gets, manipulated.

  34. Al

    The Red Card offence occurred in the 1st of 4 minutes added time. The extra 3 was justified for the time taken over the incident.

  35. Southamton lose a few to injury, start to wobble.
    Man City losing confidence after we comprehensively out-play them at their place, and don’t know what to do without Toure.
    Manure being manure.

    We should get at least third place, right? Not looking too shabby in the FA Cup either.

    All that’s left to say is…

    …WENGER OUT!!!


    Wait, no…

  36. Special congratulations to Bellerin for ending his first-team virginity 😀

    That’s another new scorer for the mighty Arsenal. One man team? Akpom nearly on the score-sheet too.

    Monreal looking back to his best. Mertesacker and Ozil enjoying their footy.

    Dare I say, Henry-esque goal from Walcott.

    Cazorla and Ozil showing how they can make magic happen on the same pitch.

    Giroud as handsome as ever.

    If I really try to be critical, Coquelin still has a tendency to dive in, but still class.

  37. Jambug
    Ok,sounds justified then, the additional time at Southampton.

    Thanks for the info, will look into this.

  38. To be fair, Al, Villa were not playing dirty. I only recall Sanchez elbowing Giroud once, and to me at least it looked un-intentional, and there wasn’t much contact.

  39. I seen quite a few incidents in the 2nd half, where Villa was kicking or pushing Arsenal, and Taylor did nothing. I don’t mind pushing as much as kicking, except at the edge of the field when our player is running out on his own.


    In other news, Inter-Milan is now “fragile”. They lost 3-1. Why do we get so much negative news when we send players to Italy?

    Stewart Pearce has been sacked at Forest.

  40. The ref’s performance today mirrored Dean’s in many ways, including the penalty. It wasn’t a diabolical performance no, but still there were things that should not be allowed. It was two times Quincy, the elbows against Giroud, one in each half. And even though this error was down to the linesman Ozil had a good goal disallowed for offside. I know we’re used to seeing much worse stuff that a performance where we don’t concede a dubious penalty or a red card feels like a good one. But I still feel the officials today were not as good as they should be.

  41. I just meant I only saw the one. Maybe not the best we can expect, but it looks like things may be improving, even if it is early days.

  42. @Al, Quincy,

    My opinion in our last games is down to two:

    1- We are getting our deserved penalties, did the club do anything behind the curtains? Other than that, the ref were not honest.

    2- Manchester City , and today Aston Villa did pay clean football (bar some players). This was one of the reason the ref could not affEct the match.

  43. Quincy
    Sorry i misunderstood you a bit. Agree, things certainly seem to be changing for the better. Lets hope things stay that way when we meet a team bent on kicking our players only.

    Abslolutely agree that the two teams you mention didn’t play dirty, and might have influenced ref’s performances in both matches. I hope that’ll be the case when we face the spuds next weekend.

  44. @Gord,

    In regards to the player West Brom signed, his actual quote was:

    ‘I want to be talked about for the good things, and hopefully I can do that and change that. Hopefully I can bang a few in this season.’

    He was talking about trying to move on from and make people forget about the tackle with his play like he did against City last year. He even mentions that he needs to learn how to tackle right. Sounds like he’s trying to move on, in a positive way (playing football properly), rather than trying to hurt people physically in the Premier League.

    @Gord, I know you’re great at stats, I was wondering if you calculated what the odds were that Taylor would referee the same fixture two years in a row?

  45. Hello Jerry.

    Sorry, I didn’t look here earlier. That may be what he quoted, but the Daily Mail article I seen, had a few points that they inserted right at the top, and destroying other teams was first. My initial thought was, “Who becomes a football player with a goal like this?”. It would be nice if he wanted to play football.

    All a person can easily calculate, is the chances assuming all referees are equally good and there is an equal probability of any being assigned to any given game. There are some modifications of that more or less wide open statement, which are not too much more difficult to calculate. For a real calculation, there are too many things we don’t know, such as how Mike Riley 😈 does assignments.

    On a practical level, MR assumed PGMO in 2009? Look at how often ManU got the same ref for the same fixture in adjacent years, and then compare that to what happened for all the other teams. That should at least get you in the ball park. To do that yourself, is probably 1000 games to look through or so. But, you may find that someone has already asked that question (from the ManU point of view), and you can find that with a search engine.

    Does that help?

  46. I agree the headline to the article makes it seem like he’s trying to hurt other teams physically.

    yeah that helps and way too much to calculate!

    I was hoping to do something based on random selection of ref appointments. Such as

    1/20 x 1/20 = 1/400 chance selection for game. But yeah, I agree too many variables to consider to properly calculate the odds I guess.

  47. WOO HOO , HOO ! Go Gunners !
    What an all round team performance – just superb !
    And like many , I too had the old deja vu feeling that our play was reminiscent of ten years ago when Henry was king !
    Bet he and Pires were gushing with joy with our play !
    Now for more of the same in the NLD !

  48. Your idea is about correct. But, fair system or not, it seems most people expect there to be different qualities of referees, and the better referees get the more difficult games. Then we have how the PGMO allocates games, where some referees get lots of games and others get very few. Or only 1. It just turns everything into a real mess.

    Between when Mike Riley started and SAF quit, there were probably a bit more than 1000 games. If your idea is about correct, we should see the same referee doing ManU versus X (either at home, or away) 2 or 3 times (1000/400 is 2.5). X is a set of 17 teams (the 17 teams present in the first year of the pair of years
    that aren’t relegated in the first of the two years). The chance of just once should be less than 2 or 3, and 4 should be about the same 1. The chance of 0 should be much smaller than 2 or 3, 5 should be about the same size, 6 or more shouldn’t happen.

    Across the 2 years, you are talking about 34 different “same fixtures”.

  49. I did it wrong. 17 teams, but 1 of those 17 is ManU. So, there are 32 “same fixtures”.

  50. Thanks for that info Gord. The question just came to my head when I heard Taylor was appointed, “what are the odds that Taylor would get appointed to the same fixture two years in a row if the assignments were truly random and all refs had an equal opportunity?”

    I was going to suggest Taylor go and buy a lottery ticket.

  51. I’m wondering if they cluster the refs to do more in certain locations: For instance, Taylor is possibly preferred for London teams:

    2012/2013 – 11/21 matches
    Arsenal – 3
    Chelsea – 3
    QPR – 3 games
    West Ham – 3 games
    Fulham – 2 games

    2013/2014 – 11/19 matches
    Arsenal – 1
    Chelsea – 2
    Spurs – 3
    Fulham – 2 (he reffed both the home and away fixture vs Everton)
    West Ham – 1
    Crystal Palace – 2

    2014/15 – 10/18 matches assigned
    Arsenal – 3
    Chelsea – 2
    Spurs – 3
    West Ham – 1
    QPR – 3
    Crystal Palace – 1

    The games assigned is less than all the teams combined accounting for games between the London teams. For example, in 2014/15, he was assigned to matches involving London teams in 10/18 assignments, and not 13/18 matches because he officiated some all London games (QPR vs West Ham, QPR vs Spurs, Spurs vs CP)

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