Aston Villa vs. Arsenal: Gunners team news and update about Declan Rice
Arsenal may have dropped a major team news tidbit before of their Saturday afternoon encounter with Aston Villa, which has a lot on the line. The Gunners now lead the Premier League after 15 games, but the title fight might be the closest in years.
Under Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool has been resurgent this season, sitting just two points behind in second place and hopeful of another title hoist. Villa are third, ahead of Manchester City in fourth, after the former defeated the latter 1-0 in a midweek match that they controlled.
While the Villains were on the outskirts of the title race, their triumph over the Champions catapulted them into the spotlight. Unai Emery’s squad is in good form, with the best home record in the league, but they will have to back it up when Arsenal comes to town.
The Gunners have been far from fluid at times this season, with the focus being defensive competence, despite the fact that the front line is more than capable of producing. When the Gunners met Luton Town in midweek, there was a glimmer of that front line clicking once more.
Goals from Gabriel Martinelli, Gabriel Jesus, and Kai Havertz seemed to win a point at Kenilworth Road until late in stoppage time in an open contest. Declan Rice sprang up there, blasting a header into the net, triggering joyful celebrations from the away end and the bench.
With a hectic Christmas time on top of City’s woes, it will be up to Mikel Arteta to capitalise and put his club in pole position to be named champions.
A win over Villa would undoubtedly assist with that, not just by adding three more points to the board, but also by widening the gap on a possible title contender.
With a limited squad at his disposal owing to injuries, the manager has few alternatives, although Arsenal may have already hinted at a start for one vital player. That would be Rice, since the pre-match hype graphic featured the star front and centre, implying he may play again.
There is no certainty, but the midfielder is expected to start as long as he is healthy owing to his significance to the team since his arrival.
Date, kick-off time and venue
Aston Villa vs Arsenal is scheduled for a 5:30pm GMT kick-off today on Saturday December 9, 2023.
The match will take place at Villa Park.
Where to watch Aston Villa vs Arsenal
TV channel: In the UK, today’s game will be televised live on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Premier League, with coverage beginning at 5pm.
Live stream: Subscribers can also catch the contest live online via the Sky Go app.
Head to head (h2h) history and results
Aston Villa wins: 69
Arsenal wins: 87