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Match Report: Villa Res 2-0 Arsenal Res


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Midfield maestros Samir Carruthers and Daniel Johnson combined to fire Villa up to second in the Barclays Premier Reserve League South.

The second string leapfrogged Arsenal on goal difference after a hard-fought victory which extended Villa's unbeaten run to six games.

The contest lacked the fireworks of last season's astonishing 10-1 scoreline although once again the claret and blues were clinical in front of goal against the Gunners.

Nathan Delfouneso and Ciaran Clark brought some first team experience to a youthful Villa side, while Arsenal fielded Craig Eastmond, Nico Yennaris and Oguzhan Ozyakup 24 hours after their involvement in the Carling Cup quarter-final defeat against Manchester City.

It was the away side who created more opportunities in the first-half with Yennaris and Elton Monteiro volleying narrowly wide in the early stages.

But Villa demonstrated a ruthless finishing edge and took the lead with their first meaningful attack on 15 minutes.

Fittingly, ex-Arsenal trainee Carruthers rounded off a delightful move. The midfielder lifted a rising first-time drive in to the top corner after Callum Robinson met Delfouneso's flick-on and powered in to the box to provide a neat cutback.

Gunners keeper Emillio Martinez had to be on his toes to keep out a Courtney Cameron corner that almost curled straight in.

And, at the other end, Johnson hooked Ozyakup's cross-cum-shot off the line after the visitors created an opening down the left flank.

Villa continued to defend astutely after the break with youth teamers Joshua Webb and Janoi Donacien producing mature displays.

However, they did require help from Benjamin Siegrist on a couple of occasions. Firstly, the Swiss goalkeeper dived to his right to push away Rhys Murphy's powerful strike from the edge of the box.

Serge Gnabry then motored down the left to get on the end of a swift Arsenal counter-attack only to be thwarted by Siegrist with a low save.

The hosts had to be patient for the second goal but it arrived seven minutes from time when Webb's right-wing cross caused havoc in Arsenal's penalty area.

Martinez failed to deal with the initial delivery in to the box, while his defence only managed to half-clear the second ball.

The loose ball was seized upon by Johnson and the Jamaican-born midfielder kept his cool to finish high in to the roof of the net.

Get well soon Petrov
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