Arsenal’s table climb’s been halted by consecutive draws and now the 12th-place Gunners must fend off the team below them on the Premier League table (start time 3pm ET Friday on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).
The Gunners have a one-point lead on Aston Villa, which has lost back-to-back games and allowed five goals in the follow-up to a 1-0 win over Manchester United.
WATCH ARSENAL vs ASTON VILLA LIVE STREAM – LINK
Alexandre Lacazette’s late goal gave Arsenal a draw with Crystal Palace last time out, and the Gunners split points with Brighton the previous week.
But Villa’s 3-2 loss to Wolves a week after falling 2-1 to Spurs has Dean Smith’s men anxious for a result.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of Arsenal vs Aston Villa.
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Arsenal team news, injuries, lineup
The Gunners are without Granit Xhaka for several more weeks, while Bukayo Saka’s status is a question mark.
🗞 Here’s how we line up for #ARSAVL…
▪️ @NunoTavares makes full PL debut
▪️ @LacazetteAlex recalled
▪️ Sambi starts in midfield
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) October 22, 2021
Aston Villa team news, injuries, lineup
Bertrand Traore and Matty Cash both are recovering from thigh injuries, while Keinan Davis and Leon Bailey continue to work toward fitness as well. It’s unclear whether one of that quartet could return, but Trezeguet is definitely out.
This is your Aston Villa team to face Arsenal tonight. 💪 #ARSAVL pic.twitter.com/7wVhxwTj7B
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) October 22, 2021
Odds and ends (full odds provided by our partner, PointsBet)
Arsenal nets -115 for a win, while a draw (+260) and Aston Villa win (+290) aren’t too far off.
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This one could be open and fun, should Mikel Arteta deem it so. We think he will and that there will be goals for both clubs… but one more for the home team. Arsenal 2-1 Aston Villa.