I spent all of last year holding the belief that there was one team Villa couldn’t beat in England, and that was the Gunners. Obviously, the Claret and Blues have done nothing to prove that notion otherwise.
These two sides met three times last year. Arsenal scored 12, Villa none.
It’s weird thinking about Villa’s recent history with the Gunners. Two seasons ago, there was the most improbable of all wins that campaign when Tony Moon scored the 3-1 goal in the opening-day win. Arsenal didn’t fail to get a result against the bottom half the rest of the year, while a quick start ultimately became another Villa false dawn.
And last year, Villa were on 10 points through four matches. Everything was great, especially given Christian Benteke’s absence.
Then Arsenal came, scored three in four minutes, and broke Paul Lambert for the final time.
Long winless streaks are nothing new for Villa, but it’s a little concerning for tomorrow that they haven’t been broken against the top sides. Last season’s nine-match winless streak was snapped against Crystal Palace, while the 12-match one was broken against West Bromwich Albion. The year before, wins over Sunderland and Hull City broke five- and six-match streaks, while West Ham United broke Villa’s eight-match winless streak in 2012/13.
Long story short? It looks pretty unlikely Villa break this streak Sunday.
What to know about Villa
Free Libor Kozak.
What to know about Arsenal
Arsenal are a very, very good side, managed by a very, very good manager. They’re the type of side that can need to win by two away from home in the Champions League and do it, 3-0.
With a win Sunday, they’d go top of the table. Not bad.
Granted, they have only won one of their last four Premier League matches. That was also a 3-1 win last weekend over Sunderland.
It’s hard to see this going Villa’s way, irrespective of who Arsenal trot out on the pitch. They’re better than Villa. A lot better.
Bovada: Villa 19/4, Arsenal 5/9, Draw 31/10
Paddy Power: Villa 11/2, Arsenal 8/15, Draw 16/5
SkyBet: Villa 9/2, Arsenal 4/7, Draw 3/1
Lay that money on Arsenal and run. If they have any desire to show up to Villa park, the Gunners are too much for this Villa side to handle right now.
Aston Villa 0, Arsenal 3.