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Another surprise for Aston Villa against Arsenal

Since their 1-0 victory against Manchester City last week, Aston Villa has been the center of discussion. Their win lifted them to third place in the standings, surpassing Manchester City. However, Aston Villa did not intend to halt their dream journey there; this time, they lost to Arsenal. The match at Villa Park saw Unai Emery’s team secure a stunning 1-0 victory against Aston Villa.

This victory for Arsenal could have meant a chance to climb to the top for Liverpool. But after consecutive losses against the second and fourth-placed teams from the previous season’s Championship and points table, questions arise about whether Aston Villa, sitting third, could contend for the title. Although there’s a long way to go before aiming for the championship.

Despite putting the talk of winning the title on hold for now, Aston Villa has achieved quite a few new milestones on this remarkable journey. Aston Villa has gained 35 or more points in the first 16 matches for the fifth time in their history, setting the precedent only after playing 16 matches. Earlier, this record was held by Liverpool (2000), Southampton (2001), and Manchester United (2002).

The question remains, even after this remarkable journey, can Aston Villa lay claim to the title race? Since their victorious season in 1980-81 (when they won the league), this is the first time they have shown such a soaring announcement. However, their coach Emery is not willing to engage in this topic yet.

Following the defeat against Arsenal, Emery stated, ‘After 30-32 matches, we will talk about it. If we are still in this position by then, maybe we can discuss it. We are not yet contenders for the title. We have played just 16 matches. We are currently in the top four, and we must work hard to maintain that.’

Villa’s captain John McGinn has said, ‘The time is not yet right to claim the title. This is the 16th match. We have a long way to go.’

Since taking charge of Villa, Emery has led the team to victory in 26 of 41 matches. In 2023, the team has won 24 matches, more than any other team except City (26). Former Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey believes, ‘This is an exciting time for them (Aston Villa) in their history.’

Former English star Phil Neville does not wish to refer to them as title contenders yet. He said, ‘I don’t think they are in the race for the title. However, in 16 matches, they are the most fascinating and consistent team.’

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