Unai Emery’s delight at Arsenal playing ‘with heart’ in late victory vs Aston Villa


Unai Emery’s delight at Arsenal playing ‘with heart’ in late victory vs Aston Villa

Arsenal played with heart in the second-half to beat Aston Villa, according to manager Unai Emery.

The Gunners, who were down to ten men for 49 minutes after Ainsley Maitland-Niles was sent off for a second bookable offence, came from behind to secure a 3-2 win at the Emirates on Sunday.

Unai Emery hailed his side’s ‘very important’ win
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Nicolas Pepe’s 59th-minute penalty cancelled out John McGinn’s opener, before Villa regained the lead through Wesley Moraes less than two minutes later.

However, goals in the final ten minutes from Calum Chambers and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang sealed the points for Arsenal.

Emery told talkSPORT: “You can speak a lot of things in 90 minutes, one for example here is we could feel our supporters.

“Together, we played more with heart in the second-half, because we needed that, and really that victory is very important.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored for the fourth successive game
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“We can speak about things we can improve, some mistakes we made in the match, but really those three points are very important.

“We are now with 11 points, we can now be happy, but also I am critiquing myself to improve some situations.

“It’s also confidence, some players need to take some confidence, and when we were playing with one less player, we didn’t concede a lot of chances, but we took risks in attack.

“We felt very strong with our supporters and had confidence to attack and take some risks.”

Emery elected to start with David Luiz and Sokratis Papastathopoulos in defence, despite the pair making calamitous errors in last weekend’s draw at Watford.

And the Spaniard admits improving his side’s defence is a high priority.