After drawing against Manchester United, everyone thought the Gunners would be back to winning ways in midweek. But instead, they slumped to a 2-1 loss at the hands of Wolves as Arteta saw two of his players sent off.
Arsenal did show promise during the first-half against Santo’s side and Arteta will be hoping his players can show the same rhythm this weekend when they face Aston Villa, away from home.
The North London side go into this matchweek with just 31 points from their first 22 games and if they fail to pick up a win on Saturday then they could once again slip down to the bottom half of the table.
Arsenal team news vs Aston Villa:
Bernd Leno picked up a red card during the second half against Wolves meaning Arteta will have to rely on his backup keeper this weekend.
Arsenal have signed Mat Ryan last month but the player is still recovering from an injury and remains a doubt for the Villa game. If Ryan cannot be fit in time then Runarsson will have to play in goal – something which Mikel Arteta does not want.
David Luiz’s red card appeal has fallen into deaf ears meaning the defender will not be available this weekend so Gabriel will now get a chance to come back into the side and play alongside Rob Holding.
Kieran Tierney has still not fully recovered from his calf injury meaning Cedric Soares could once again get the chance to play at left-back.
Thomas Partey and Granit Xhaka will take up their usual place in central midfield but it will be interesting to see if Arteta decides to play Odegaard in attacking midfield or does the manager keep his faith on Emile Smith Rowe.
Aubameyang came off the bench in midweek but the Gabon international will be named in the starting line-up against Villa on Saturday.
The return of Aubameyang means Nicolas Pepe will move to the bench as Bukayo Saka is more or less a guaranteed starter on the right wing. Lacazette will play up front.
Arsenal’s predicted line-up vs Aston Villa:
Predicted Starting Line-up:
Runarsson; Gabriel, Rob Holding, Hector Bellerin, Saores; Granit Xhaka, Thomas Partey, Emile Smith Rowe/Odegaard; Aubameyang, Lacazette, Bukayo Saka.