Revenge is a dish best served cold. That is the mindset Aston Villa coach Unai Emery is instilling in his players in preparation for Saturday’s English Premier League humdinger with Arsenal. Mikel Arteta’s table toppers were the last team to win a football game at Villa Park before they embarked on an 18-game winning streak across all competitions that has taken them into third place in the standings just four points off title pace. It is a far cry from their 1-5 evisceration at the hands of Newcastle United in this season’s opener.
Excitement is building among Villa Park faithful that they are onto something special thanks to Wednesday’s 1-0 victory over champions Manchester City in what was only their third maximum against Pep Guardiola’s treble winners in 23 outings. Fasten your seat belts, for though Arsenal were 4-2 winners over the Villans back in February, they needed two injury time strikes to settle the outcome of what was a pulsating end to end encounter.
Liverpool can take temporary leadership of the standings if they overcome Crystal Palace in the early kick off. Jurgen Klopp’s Kop were clinical without being spectacular in taking care of business 2-0 against Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United midweek and will be glad with a repeat performance at Selhurst Park. The form book points to a Liverpool win against Roy Hodgson’s Eagles who have registered just two victories in their last ten outings.
No more mediocrity is to be tolerated when champions Manchester City travel to Luton Town where they will be hoping to arrest an alarming slide in form that has witnessed them drop from first to fourth in a space of a few weeks. Cityzens boss Guardiola is to come out all guns blazing as he doesn’t need to rotate players in readiness for next Wednesday’s trip to Red Star Belgrade because it’s a dead rubber.
Anticipate fireworks when Tottenham Hotspur try to stop the rot at home to Newcastle United on Sunday evening. Ange Postecoglu won three manager of the month gongs at the start of this season but injuries to key players James Maddison and Micky van de Ven has coincided with a loss of form that has resulted in four losses in five outings. Newcastle United’s full throttle approach dictates goals must flow.
Crystal Palace v Liverpool,
Brighton v Burnley,
Manchester United v Bournemouth,
Sheffield United v Brentford,
Wolves v Nottingham Forest,
Aston Villa v Arsenal
Everton v Chelsea,
Fulham v West Ham,
Luton Town v Manchester City,
Tottenham Hotspur v Newcastle United