Aston Villa fell to defeat at the Emirates Stadium after twice surrendering a lead to ten-man Arsenal.

Dean Smith made just one change with Trezeguet coming in to replace Jota, who dropped to the bench.

Numerical disadvantage

John McGinn’s opener and Wesley’s second goal for Villa weren’t enough to fight off a late comeback for the hosts who played with a numerical disadvantage for 50 minutes.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ second booking for a challenge on Neil Taylor wasn’t further punished by Villa’s attack. Villa squandered the chance to double their lead after McGinn struck early.

Anwar El Ghazi’s precise cross was tucked home by the Scot who celebrated his second goal in north London this term.

After Villa failed to convert a second opportunity Arsenal struck back from the penalty spot as the man of the match Matteo Guendouzi won a penalty under Bjorn Engels’ challenge.

Villa regain the lead

Wesley scored against ArsenalThough only 60 seconds later, Jack Grealish put his foot on the ball and ran through the hosts’ fragile backline. Cutting the ball back for Wesley, the Brazilian prodded the ball past Bernd Leno to restore the advantage for the away side.

McGinn and Trezeguet missed chances of their own as villa went in search of ending the game, but their wasteful efforts were eventually punished.

Villa lose it late on

With time running out for the hosts’ substitute Callum Chambers restored parity for Arsenal with nine minutes on the clock.

Arsenal was then awarded a free-kick late on. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang struck a superb free-kick to seal all three points for the home side.

Replays, later on, revealed that Arsenal was lucky to not have the goal disallowed as Chambers was in the wall. Rules changed in the summer preventing him from being able to do this but the officials failed to apply this rule.

Smith’s men will also feel that they should have had a penalty late on when the ball appeared to hit Sokratis Papastathopoulos’ arm. Once again VAR failed to do its job.

Villa will have to pick themselves up for a tough home tie to Burnley on Saturday.


  1. 1. Maitland Niles won the ball & Talylor injured him stamping on his leg

    2. Chambers was not in the wall, he was off the wall which allowed

    3. A player whose arms are down and therefore maintain the silhouette of someone standing upright will not have a penalty awarded against them – especially when the ball is blasted at them from close range.

    You’re welcome.

    • 1. Niles did win the ball and then followed through so got sent off and rightly so.

      2. Chambers was clearly in the wall when the rules state he should be a certain distance away from the wall. He wasn’t.

      3. His arm wasn’t down and he moves his body towards the ball. PLUS the new rule states that if the ball touches a players arm – regardless of if he means to its handball.



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