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Arsenal take on Aston Villa at the Emirates as both clubs begin the new campaign on Saturday. The Gunners have yet to make a top signing this summer, but Arsene Wenger is confident he can bring new faces to north London before the transfer window shuts.

Aaron Ramsey

Where to Watch

Kick-off is set for 3pm BST. Radio commentary will be available on BBC Radio 5 Live. Catch highlights on Match of the Day on BBC One and BBC One HD at 10:30pm BST.


The north London side fared well in pre-season fixtures, losing only one of seven friendly games. This included a 3-1 win over Manchester City in the last fixture as goals from Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud sealed a comfortable victory for the Gunners.

Arsenal's preparation for the season has been surrounded by transfer talk about strikers that has seen them linked with Liverpool's Luis Suarez and Manchester United's wantaway Wayne Rooney. Wenger has publicly admitted interest in both players.

The Frenchman has signed French youngster Yaya Sanogo (on a free) and with a fortnight remaining in the transfer window, failing to sign players could put them in a difficult situation to challenge the Manchester clubs and Chelsea for the Premier League title.

Christian Benteke

Villa's new season has been boosted by last season's top scorer Christian Benteke, who has committed his future to the club with a new contract after earlier handing in a transfer request.

Paul Lambert's side come into this game after a 3-2 victory over Malaga in a pre-season fixture. Benteke scored twice for the English club as they registered their second victory in four games.

What the Managers Say

Wenger: (on transfers) "Why should I resist? I just defend the idea that you spend the money you have and not the money you don't have. If you want to describe me as greedy and you live with me, you would see that I am not. I am rather generous. I fought my whole life to pay players well. But we had to go through a period when we had to look at the money that we spent."

Lambert: (on Benteke) "Looking at him since he's come back from his break and the games he's played he's been excellent. He's not lost his goalscoring exploits. To me, Christian is just getting better. He's grown in confidence a lot. He's a big, big athlete and a really top footballer."

Olivier Giroud

Team Form


  • Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): W L D W W
  • Last Result: Arsenal 3-1 Manchester City

Aston Villa

  • Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): W W L D D
  • Last Result: Aston Villa 3-2 Malaga

Team News


  • Injuries: Thomas Vermaelen, Nacho Monreal (both back), Abou Diaby (knee), Mikel Arteta (thigh)
  • Doubtful: Bacary Sagna (Ankle) and Aaron Ramsey (Ankle)
  • Suspended: N/A

Probable Lineup: Szczesny; Jenkinson, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs; Wilshere, Ramsey; Cazorla, Rosicky, Walcott; Giroud

Aston Villa

  • Injuries: Charles N'Zogbia (Achilles)
  • Doubtful: N/A
  • Suspended: N/A

Probable Lineup: Guzan; Lowton, Baker, Vlaar, Luna; Westwood, El Ahmady, Delph; Weimann, Agbonlahor; Benteke