Arsenal 3-1 Aston Villa: Impressive Gunners smash visitors

In one of the most obvious signs of progress under the Spaniard yet, his team actually resembled something approaching the Manchester City side Arteta coached alongside Pep Guardiola.

Indeed, their pressing did not allow Villa to settle at all and, in truth, the home side could well have been ahead before Thomas Partey’s 23rd-minute opener.

VAR then awarded a penalty after the half-time whistle and though Emi Martinez was able to save Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s spot-kick, the striker scored from the rebound to give his side a deserved two-goal lead.

Dean Smith’s decision to move Ollie Watkins into the left channel did yield a touch more success for Villa although, even despite that, Arsenal never really looked truly troubled.

The pressure continued in the second-half and when Emile Smith Rowe pounced on a loose pass from John McGinn and duly race through to score a third, the game looked over before the hour mark.

A late Jacob Ramsey goal could well have Arsenal fold in the final few minutes but in what is another sign of progression, they managed to see out proceedings relatively comfortably.

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