Arsenal v Villa Preview/ Lineup: 3-4-3 and Probably Mikel’s Strongest 11

Aston Villa Football Club was formed in March 1874, by members of the Villa Cross Wesleyan Chapel in Handsworth which is now part of Birmingham. The four founders of Aston Villa were Jack Hughes, Frederick Matthews, Walter Price and William Scattergood. Aston Villa’s first match was against the local Aston Brook St Mary’s Rugby team. As a condition of the match, the Villa side had to agree to play the first half under Rugby rules and the second half under Association rules After moving to the Wellington Road ground in 1876, Villa soon established themselves as one of the best teams in the Midlands, winning their first honour, the Birmingham Senior Cup in 1880, under the captaincy of Scotsman George Ramsay.

They have played at their home ground, Villa Park, since 1897. Aston Villa was one of the founder members of the Football League in 1888 and of the Premier League in 1992. Villa are one of only five English clubs to have won the European Cup, in 1981–82. They have also won the Football League First Division seven times, the FA Cup seven times, the League Cup five times, and the UEFA Super Cup once.

Villa has a fierce local rivalry with Birmingham City and the Second City derby between the teams has been played since 1879. The club’s traditional kit colours are claret shirts with sky blue sleeves, white shorts and sky blue socks. Their traditional club badge is of a rampant lion. The club is currently owned by the NSWE group, a company owned by the Egyptian billionaire Nassef Sawiris and the American billionaire Wes Edens.

Wembley is considered to be the spiritual home of English football, but Villa Park is a close second. Aston Villa’s home since 1897, the ground sits in the shadow of the Jacobean stately home Aston Hall and has evolved over the years into a magnificent all-seated arena with a capacity of more than 42,000.  Villa’s home ground is no stranger to major events, either, having hosted matches at both the 1966 World Cup and the European Championships in 1996. It is one of a select few that has staged international fixtures over three different centuries, the first senior international taking place in 1899. In addition, it was a regular venue for FA Cup semi-finals before they were moved to Wembley. Villa Park also hosted the last-ever European Cup Winners’ Cup Final between Italian side Lazio and Spanish club Real Mallorca in 1999, as well as the 2012 FA Community Shield match when Chelsea faced Manchester City.

Arsenal v Aston Villa EPL Home Games
112-Apr-93  101
206-Nov-93  112
326-Dec-94 1 00
421-Oct-95  102
528-Dec-96 1 22
626-Oct-97 1 00
716-May-991  10
811-Sep-991  31
914-Oct-001  10
1009-Dec-011  32
1130-Nov-021  31
1227-Aug-031  20
1316-Oct-041  31
1401-Apr-061  50
1519-Aug-06 1 11
1601-Mar-08 1 11
1715-Nov-08  102
1827-Dec-091  30
1915-May-11  112
2024-Mar-121  30
2123-Feb-131  21
2217-Aug-13  113
2301-Feb-151  50
2415-May-161  40
2522-Sep-191  32

Villa has only beaten Arsenal away on six occasions in the Premier League and it’s difficult to predict that trend changing, although they have been playing some nice football this season – including inflicting Liverpool with a 7-2 thrashing at Villa Park.

Arsenal v Aston Villa Home Games
Division 133121810876


TA Predicted Line-up: 3-4-3 and probably Mikel’s strongest-11


59 thoughts on “Arsenal v Villa Preview/ Lineup: 3-4-3 and Probably Mikel’s Strongest 11

  • Brought forward from previous thread.

    Congratulations, jw1. I (we all) had an idea how you received DJT’s ascent to the Presidency and so, how you must have endured the last 3+ years.

    With Joe Biden, I believe it is normal service resuming for the US.

  • Thanks for the brilliant preview, GN5. Indeed, Villa Park is a favourite of the English national sides and is a famous ground. Aston Villa were a great side in times past; it is noteworthy that they have won more English league titles than Chelsea, for instance (whose wins came in the Roman Abramovic era, by the way).

    To the game itself, expect Villa to be bold at the Emirates as they seek to get their campaign back on track, after falling off a bit following a good start that saw them within the top 3 for a few weeks. We should be able to overpower them, however, for the win.

  • I feel we should go with 4 at the back so as to enable us play our strongest 11, packing Partey, Elneny/Xhaka and Willian in the midfield; with a front 3 of Saka, Laca and Auba.

    David Luis and Gabriel can be the two CNs, conveniently, with Bellerin and Tierney as full backs. This will mean the defense gets support from both Xhaka/Elneny and Partey, to allow the full backs to bomb forward as often as possible.

    Look forward to a good win.

  • Tottenham ugh. Also, did I hear right? Leicester given 8 penalties so far! It cant be… that would be insane. They won the league on penalties before. I’ll never forget that.

  • Thanks once more GN5!

    There are few times and teams I might setup personnel-wise for– based on individual opposition players. Today, I’d like to see AMN on the right at either a wingback or MF position.

    When Villa have been at their best this season to date? The MF pair of Ross Barkley and Jack Grealish have been flying forward in tandem. Thomas is a very good matchup with Barkley in stature and physicality– and the type of matchup I’d like to see with AMN and Grealish.

    Perhaps today we go with a 4-back set in a 4-3-3:
    Bells – Luiz – Gabriel – Tierney
    AMN – Thomas – Elneny
    Willian – Laca – Auba

    Arteta’s focus on the team’s defensive issues have brought dividends. Arsenal are currently lowest in the PL for GA (7). Don’t wish to see him move away from that focus. This lineup will call for creativity from both Willian and Thomas– with adventurous forays by Hector and Kieran– to create opportunities for our goal scorers Auba and Laca.

    Mikel is a fan of interchangeable parts in attack and defense. Wouldn’t be a surprise to see Willian slide toward the center of the pitch in a 4-3-1-2 alignment at times. Villa plays an open style which would suit this adjustment.

    Also would not be surprised if the game came down to the better man in goal today. 🤞

    Go Good Guys!


    (Eris, I had left a reply to you on the previous thread. Much appreciated!)

  • JW I’ve been calling for starts for AMN too, it just doesn’t seem to be happening in the league. To me this is a big game considering the other results this weekend.

  • Evening guys and thanks for comments. Same line up as against MU. So no XhakA and Luiz, but starts for Saka and Elneny. CoyGs 🌋 🌋 🌋

  • Holding
    B. Saka
    Aubameyang (c)

    R. Rúnarsson
    David Luiz

  • Saw your response, jw1. Fingers crossed it all goes well. I respect Biden for the refreshing message he’s put out in that speech. Such a departure from the divisive rhetoric of the recent past.

    Back to footie. The line up is a good, tested one, but my concern would be the fact Villa ain’t manU and we are at home. We need to set up to dominate them. Shame, Luis is only on the bench but I guess for his age, this game has come too soon after Thursday.

    A good win is still expected.

  • Hopefully continuity improves the flow of the attack. Not to take the defense for granted though. Grealish is always causing defenses headaches.

  • There is a lot of balance in this team with four pure attackers, two all round midfielders and five defenders, of whom are two wing backs. It is a very good site. Not our best imo but still very very good.

  • Looked more like a fencing competition with the standstill prior to Trezuguet’s goal.
    Lacking there were no attempts to dispossess any of the Villains involved.


  • very limp performance cant help but say it again we need to increase our potency from wing Auba to the middle please at some point

  • We are painful to watch. I agree with the commentators that we have to get Auba much more involved. Not just this game, all season. If you watch a compilation of his touches this season, you’d see a lot of money being wasted.

  • cant say they dont deserve it I can see why they demolished Liverpool proper footballing side

  • For the 3rd goal Gabriel kept Watkins onside. Holding did position himself properly, but it was in vain, as Gabriel stayed behind (without another attacker to mark).

  • What an amazing job Dean Smith is doing he outcoached Mikel here gave us a lesson and thats after he sounded pretty confident in pre-match comments.

  • That’s twice I have paid £15 to watch rubbish. You can blame players, but I have to say Artetas insistence on playing out from the back every single time . looks awful and frankly isn’t working,
    When started playing he looked great firing in crosses etc in the same way the two Liverpool backs do, no messing about just punch it in.. now 9 times out of 10 he turns and lays it back . You can almost sense him wanting to run with the ball.. it looks like chess on ice when we have the ball.
    I can only assume he is playing under instructions and he doesn’t look like he’s enjoying it.

    I know they were ahead and we had to attack, but take a look at Villas 3rd goal. End to end in about 15 seconds

  • The frustration is that we’re dealing with the same shortcomings in creativity for quite a while. Arteta needs to solve this without giving up all the improvements in structure and defense. Not as simple as it sounds. But I’m sure we all have some suggestions, lol.

  • All I can say is there is no way Joe and Nelson (I know he was injured today) shouldnt see their minutes go uo the way Pepe and Willy have underperformed.

  • Indeed, we were predictable, slow, boring to watch.
    We had our fair share of losses in the last few seasons, but I don’t remember a game where the worst player of the opponent played better then our best…

  • A real shame we could not push on today, but we will bounce back.

    I am going to take a break for a week or so. Stay safe and keep the faith. ⚽🌄

  • Morning Guy’s here are the results of the weekly competition:-

    For the week:-
    1st Kev and GN5 with 4/6 plus 2 bonus points for a total of 6 points each.
    2nd PB with 2/6 plus 2 points for correct score.
    3rd JWL, Total & Gooneris with 3/6.
    For the season|:-
    1st. Gooneris with 28 points
    2nd. Kev with 25 points
    3rd. PB with 24.33 points
    4th. GN5 with 23 points
    5th. Total with 19 points
    6th. LEGALL with 18.33 points
    7th. JWL with 17.33 points.

  • That was a right shambles. I didn’t think I will see the day a side that battled relegation last season will come to the home of football and outplay our side, so. Yes, they drubbed Liverpool (but at Villa Park) and have had a few good results; if anything, that should have got our boys the much more determined. They beat us to the second balls, we’re more aggressive and simply looked stronger than our lads.

    This result should serve as a pointer as to the enormity of the task ahead (top 4) and get the boys return with greater determination to be consistent in the next few games.

    I would resist the urge to name names because there was no player on our side you could pick out for praise; the lads should be disappointed Martinez made zero saves. He was not troubled, (unless I missed the moment) . Let that sink.

  • I agree with Eris (in all observations), but especially that we may continue playing the prediction game in the interlull. The scope should cover the international games, and maybe even the English Football League Trophy, currently known as the Papa John’s or Trophy.
    (Arsenal Academy plays tonight at 18:30 CET – 7 hours from now, so that might be difficult to cover.)

  • in the latter days of Wengers reign he was criticised for under coaching ie. he trusted players to make their own decisions. Arteta on the other hand seems to be over coaching . Many of the players looked very unhappy and unable to express themselves. I keep going back to Kierney who was like a breath of fresh air when he arrived. He now seems to be playing in a similar way that Bellerin does.

    Lacazette and Willian were truly awful and just a out everyone else was mediocre. it does make me wonder if we went out and brought in someone like Jack Grealish, who was top class the other night. he would be rendered useless by our mundane tactics.

    Far to early to start criticising Arteta too much, but we need to change things quickly

  • I like Papa John’s, a vegetarian with extra cheese, thin crust, very tasty.

    Moller and Balogun are developing a nice understanding, Smith Rowe should get another run out, I wonder if Willock will play as he’s still an U23?

  • As requested we will keep the competition going during the Interlull, here are the teams that I’ve chosen. Same rules apply.
    Italy v Poland
    Belgium v England
    Wales v Republic of Ireland
    Slovakia v Scotland
    Portugal v France
    Sweden v Croatia

  • Italia vs Polska….. H
    Belgie vs Anglais.. H
    Wales vs Eire……. H
    Slovakia vs Caledonia.. D
    Portugal vs Francais… A
    Sweden vs Croatia…. D

  • Here are my predictions:-

    Italy v Poland – H
    Belgium v England – A
    Wales v Republic of Ireland – H
    Slovakia v Scotland – A
    Portugal v France – A
    Sweden v Croatia – A

  • Gillingham (Coyle) 1-1 Arsenal (Cirjan) …. Arsenal win 4-2 on penalties.

    Saliba plays and plays well from what I’ve read, Chambers plays about an hour and does well.
    Cirjan and Cottrell have good games.

  • Agreed Eris. Quite a disheartening display. I know that this is a team that for years has cried out for discipline in defense and positioning, so Arteta needs to receive a lot of credit so far for our improvements. But it also has to be said…, he appears to be lacking in the skill of inspiring free flowing football with chance creation. Goals against… way down. Goals for… way down. So at the moment, to be a strict judge of his tenure so far, you’d have to say, the jury is still out.

  • Italy v Poland H
    Belgium v England H
    Wales v Republic of Ireland H
    Slovakia v Scotland A
    Portugal v France H
    Sweden v Croatia D

  • Italy v Poland Home
    Belgium v England Home
    Wales v Republic of Ireland Home
    Slovakia v Scotland Draw
    Portugal v France Away
    Sweden v Croatia Away

  • Hi all, just a quick message to say we are back in business again from tomorrow with a post from the best cabbie in the universe 🌌 😁🤓

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s