Premier League Preview: West Brom v Arsenal

The manager questioned his players’ commitment following the 5-0 home defeat to Leeds on Tuesday and Filip Krovinovic, Matheus Pereira and Branislav Ivanovic could return.

Mikel Arteta’s men meanwhile will take momentum into 2021 after halting a seven-match winless streak with a 3-1 Boxing Day victory over London rivals Chelsea followed by a scrappy 1-0 success at struggling Brighton.

The back-to-back wins have moved the north London club to within six points of the top six and helped quash talk of relegation.

The game kicks off at The Hawthorns at 8 o’clock on Saturday evening.

Mikel Arteta says trimming Arsenal squad is January transfer window priority

The Gunners were able to offload Emiliano Martinez and Henrikh Mkhitaryan on permanent deals in September while a month later Matteo Guendouzi and Lucas Torreira departed on loan.

But forgotten man Mesut Ozil remained at the Emirates along with Shkodran Mustafi and Sead Kolasinac, who have barely featured in the Premier League this season.

Arsenal have been linked with a loan move for Real Madrid playmaker Isco next month, but first of all technical director Edu will attempt to raise funds by moving on those who are surplus to requirements.

One player who is not set to depart is attacker Reiss Nelson, despite failing to play for the club since December 3.

It has been a stop-start campaign for the 21-year-old, who has scored once in eight outings for the Gunners this term. Mikeal Arteta confirmed Nelson had a muscular issue which saw him in and out of training, but not 100 per cent fit.

Aston Villa secure shock 3-0 Premier League win at Arsenal

The Gunners were unable to live with their high energy visitors who won away in North London for the first time since 2011.

Villa were quickest out of the blocks at the Emirates, as John McGinn’s goal inside 60 seconds was overturned by VAR.

However, Dean Smith’s side did finally edge in front on 25 minutes as Bukayo Saka diverted Matt Targett’s cross into his own net.

Arsenal did look to rally before the break however, as Thomas Partey and Alexandre Lacazette both wasted half chances.

Neither side were able to get a grip on the game after the restart with Arteta’s team worryingly short on attacking intent.

With Arsenal unable to create anything meaningful in the final third, Villa doubled their advantage on 72 minutes.

Ross Barkley’s corner flew past a line of Arsenal defenders and Ollie Watkins powered a header past Bernd Leno.

That goal took the sting out of any potential Arsenal comeback as Watkins netted his second with 15 mintues to go.

Villa skipper Jack Grealish led the counter attack, and he feed in Watkins inside the box and the former Brentford striker confidently fired past Leno.

Full Time at the Emirates Stadium it’s Arsenal 0 Aston Villa 3

Ajax star linked to Arsenal move

The Dutch forward is available for just £25m, which by today’s standards is an absolute bargain.

The 28-year-old bagged 16 goals and five assists for Ajax in the season just gone, and he plays best on the left-hand side of a front three, meaning Aubameyang will be free to take up his preferred role as a central striker.

Promes, Aubameyang and Nicolas Pepe could give arsenal the firepower upfront to rival the likes of Liverpool and Man City
Any new signing could make their club debut in just over a fortnight with the community shield match against Liverpool is scheduled for August the 29th. It was hoped that some fans would be allowed in to trial some corona virus-safe methods but since similar tests in cricket, snooker and live comedy had to be abandoned due to a rise in Covid-19 cases, we believe that the FA are unlikely to press ahead with their plans.