Arsene Gunner silence Emirates critics with FA Cup win!
Arsenal v Aston Villa
FA Cup Fourth Round
Sunday 16:00 - live on ESPN
Match betting: Arsenal 8/13 Draw 11/4 Aston Villa 9/2
Last weekend's defeat in the Premier League to Manchester United could not have gone much worse for manager Arsene Wenger. The defeat has left Arsenal in fifth place in the table and in real danger of potentially missing out on a Champions League place come the end of the season. The French tactician's substitution of the impressive youngster Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain not only baffled star striker Robin van Persie but also caused unrest in the Arsenal faithful.
Nevertheless news this week has been more positive at the Emirates. The possible return of Thierry Henry, Bacary Sagna, Francis Coquelin and Mikel Arteta could signify the beginning of the end of the vast injury list that Arsene Wenger has had to contend with. Arsenal have lost three of their last four games in all competitions in 2012, with only a narrow 1-0 victory in the previous round of the FA Cup over Leeds to get excited about.
Arsene Wenger has guided Arsenal to four FA Cups during his spell at the Emirates and it appears that he must deliver a fifth if the Gunners are to end their seven year trophy drought this year. Alex McLeish's Aston Villa will come to the Emirates full of confidence. They will know that the pressure resides firmly upon the home side and with seven successive away games without defeat in the league and cup they travel to North London with a spring in their step.
Aston Villa's injury crisis has been well publicized and the returning Gabriel Agbonlahor (10/3 anytime) will look to join up with a strong looking forward line including Darren Bent (13/2 first scorer) and new addition Robbie Keane (11/1 two or more). The Irish captain got his first goals for the Villans against Wolves last weekend whilst partner Bent will have fond memories of the Emirates after his match winning brace in last season's 2-1 victory over Arsenal.
It would be hard not to mention Arsenal legend Thierry Henry, off the back of a recent injury he is likely to start on the bench, however, if the Leeds match was anything to go by the Frenchman will be eager to get on the Emirates soil and bag himself another goal. He is 4/1 with Hills to score first and is even money about scoring anytime during the match.
With only one clean sheet in their last nine games Aston Villa have defensive problems of their own. With that in mind and coupled with the added incentive of yet another make-shift Arsenal back four the 10/11 available on both teams to score is the stand out value bet. Both these sides are good going forward and seeing as it's a cup tie both will set up in a positive manner in an attempt to score goals and win the game.