After grabbing a late decisive point against Crystal Palace at the Emirates, Mikel Arteta’s men now move to the ninth game of the season they host the in-form Aston Villa. The Gunners have now gone on a five-match unbeaten streak in the Premier League and have bounced back massively after the start they had to the season. Aston Villa will certainly not be easy as they currently sit just one point behind Arsenal. In this article, we look at the probable starting XI for Arsenal against Aston Villa.
Goalkeeper – Aaron Ramsdale
Arsenal and Arteta have finally found a fantastic long-term asset in Aaron Ramsdale and will be looking to use him to his full potential. After making some top-notch saves against Crystal Palace on Monday, the 23-year-old looks certain to start against Villa this weekend. Ramsdale will face the likes of Ings and Watkins but will be looking to get another clean sheet under his belt.
Defenders – Kieran Tierney, Gabriel, Ben White, Tomiyasu
Kieran Tierney’s excellent performances this season have massively gone under the radar as the Scottish left-back continues his brilliant form of run. Tierney is among Arsenal’s most important players and is absolutely nailed to start in every game, bar any injuries or suspensions.
Gabriel Magalhaes and Ben White have been absolutely rock solid at the back and the stats are there to show. The duo has conceded just 3 goals in the 6 games they have started together and will be looking to keep Villa’s attack silent as the Gunners look to get a positive result.
A silent worker in the team is Takehiro Tomiyasu. He had a decent outing against Palace out of possession but struggled quite a lot with the ball at his feet. A key battle to keep an eye on today will be Tomiyasu against Emi Buendia as the right-back will hope to keep the Argentinian silent.
Midfield – Thomas Partey, Sambi Lokonga, Martin Odegaard
Even a half-fit Thomas Partey stays in the team, absolutely no question of him being dropped unless he is either injured or suspended. A key player in Arteta’s system, Partey is the go-to-player to break the lines and play the balls through the opposition.
Sambi Lokonga has huge boots to fill in the absence of Granit Xhaka who is reportedly out for 3 months. He had a below-average game against Palace, as his error led to Edouard scoring the second goal against Arsenal. Lokonga is still very young and full of potential, he looks certain to start with Partey in the center of the midfield against Villa.
While there were rumours circulating of him being injured, Martin Odegaard is set to start after he was pictured training with the team. Odegaard was subbed off after 67 minutes in the last game meaning he will be in better shape than other players as well.
Forward – Emile Smith Rowe, Aubameyang, Nicolas Pepe
A move that many Arsenal fans are hoping to see if Smith-Rowe is at the left-wing position. The number 10 is best used as a left-winger because of his ability to move swiftly past opponents and cross the ball at the perfect time.
Arsenal’s top goalscorer of this season so far, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was seen all over the pitch against Palace. Whether it was opening the scoring for his team or committing to defensive tackles, the captain had a brilliant game. Arteta will certainly start his captain unless it’s fitness-related.
Is Bukayo Saka going to be fit? That is the main question that will decide Pepe’s place in the team tonight. The starboy suffered a horrific tackle from McArthur and was subbed off soon after that. The lack of training and fatigue might pull him out of the action tonight as we look at the probable starting XI for Arsenal against Aston Villa.