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Mikel Arteta takes a short corner.
Alan Hutton challenges Thomas Vermaelen unfairly and gives away a free kick. The referee sends off Alan Hutton for second bookable offence. Direct free kick taken by Mikel Arteta.
Robin van Persie fouled by Alan Hutton, the ref awards a free kick. Alan Hutton is given a yellow card. Mikel Arteta takes the free kick.
Corner taken by Barry Bannan, Headed effort from inside the area by Alan Hutton misses to the right of the goal.
A cross is delivered by Stiliyan Petrov, clearance by Laurent Koscielny.
The ball is crossed by Barry Bannan, clearance by Per Mertesacker.
Mikel Arteta takes a shot. Bradley Guzan makes a save.
Short corner taken by Robin van Persie.
Andrey Arshavin takes a shot. Alan Hutton gets a block in. Robin van Persie takes the inswinging corner, Yossi Benayoun grabs a headed goal from close range. Aston Villa 1-2 Arsenal.Assist by Robin van Persie. Nathan Delfouneso is brought on as a substitute for Marc Albrighton.
Francis Coquelin produces a cross, Alan Hutton makes a clearance.
Yao Gervinho goes off and Andrey Arshavin comes on. Aaron Ramsey leaves the field to be replaced by Yossi Benayoun. Robin van Persie produces a left-footed shot from outside the penalty area and misses left.
Caution for Robin van Persie. Free kick taken by Bradley Guzan. Unfair challenge on Charles N'Zogbia by Aaron Ramsey results in a free kick. Direct effort from the free kick comes in from Stiliyan Petrov.
Centre by Robin van Persie, Ciaran Clark manages to make a clearance.
Robin van Persie decides to take the corner short.
Barry Bannan takes the outswinging corner, Laurent Koscielny manages to make a clearance.
A cross is delivered by Marc Albrighton, save by Wojciech Szczesny.
The ball is swung over by Marc Albrighton. The ball is delivered by Charles N'Zogbia, Thomas Vermaelen makes a clearance.
Mikel Arteta takes a inswinging corner from the left by-line to the near post, clearance made by Richard Dunne. Robin van Persie takes a inswinging corner to the near post, clearance made by Richard Dunne.
Thomas Vermaelen gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Marc Albrighton. Alan Hutton restarts play with the free kick.
Effort on goal by Barry Bannan from a long way out goes over the bar.
Corner taken left-footed by Robin van Persie, clearance by Gabriel Agbonlahor.
The ball is crossed by Theo Walcott, clearance by Richard Dunne. Corner from the right by-line taken by Robin van Persie, Bradley Guzan makes a save.
Tomas Rosicky is brought on as a substitute for Emmanuel Frimpong.
Inswinging corner taken by Robin van Persie from the right by-line played to the near post, Stiliyan Petrov makes a clearance. Corner taken by Robin van Persie played to the near post, clearance by Richard Dunne.
The referee penalises Gabriel Agbonlahor for handball. Laurent Koscielny restarts play with the free kick.
The ball is delivered by Stephen Warnock.
Foul by Emmanuel Frimpong on Charles N'Zogbia, free kick awarded. The free kick is delivered left-footed by Barry Bannan from left channel, clearance made by Robin van Persie.
Emmanuel Frimpong concedes a free kick for a foul on Barry Bannan. Direct free kick taken by Richard Dunne.
The referee blows for offside against Stephen Warnock. Free kick taken by Wojciech Szczesny.
Ciaran Clark produces a left-footed shot from long distance which goes wide right of the goal.
Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Robin van Persie, Per Mertesacker takes a shot. Bradley Guzan makes a save. Corner taken by Robin van Persie.
Marc Albrighton gets on the score sheet with a goal from inside the box low into the middle of the goal. Aston Villa 1-1 Arsenal.
Unfair challenge on Francis Coquelin by Stiliyan Petrov results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Mikel Arteta.
Robin van Persie decides to take a short corner.
Stiliyan Petrov challenges Aaron Ramsey unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Per Mertesacker.
Barry Bannan produces a cross, save by Wojciech Szczesny. Unfair challenge on Mikel Arteta by Stiliyan Petrov results in a free kick. Mikel Arteta takes the free kick.
Thomas Vermaelen challenges Marc Albrighton unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Bradley Guzan.
Foul by Per Mertesacker on Charles N'Zogbia, free kick awarded. Per Mertesacker is booked. Stephen Ireland leaves the field to be replaced by Barry Bannan. Stephen Warnock takes the direct free kick, Shot from outside the box by Barry Bannan misses to the left of the target.
Yao Gervinho produces a cross.
The ball is swung over by Marc Albrighton, save by Wojciech Szczesny.
Robin van Persie takes a shot. Blocked by Richard Dunne. Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mikel Arteta by Ciaran Clark. Ciaran Clark shown a yellow card. Per Mertesacker takes the free kick.
The ball is swung over by Theo Walcott, Richard Dunne manages to make a clearance.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Gabriel Agbonlahor. Aaron Ramsey takes the indirect free kick.
Shot from just outside the box by Aaron Ramsey misses to the right of the goal.
The referee blows for offside. Indirect free kick taken by Per Mertesacker.
Corner taken by Marc Albrighton, Emmanuel Frimpong makes a clearance.
Charles N'Zogbia fouled by Francis Coquelin, the ref awards a free kick. The referee shows Francis Coquelin a yellow card. Direct free kick taken by Stephen Warnock.
Stephen Ireland handles the ball and concedes a free kick. Free kick taken by Wojciech Szczesny.
Centre by Charles N'Zogbia.
Corner taken by Marc Albrighton from the right by-line to the near post, Robin van Persie manages to make a clearance.
Robin van Persie sends in a cross. Free kick awarded for a foul by Per Mertesacker on Gabriel Agbonlahor. Strike comes in from Stiliyan Petrov from the free kick, blocked by Emmanuel Frimpong.
Marc Albrighton crosses the ball, save by Wojciech Szczesny.
Centre by Stephen Ireland, Francis Coquelin makes a clearance.
Stephen Warnock delivers the ball, clearance by Laurent Koscielny.
Stiliyan Petrov takes a shot. Save by Wojciech Szczesny.
Theo Walcott takes a shot. Save by Bradley Guzan.
Penalty awarded for a foul by Ciaran Clark on Theo Walcott. Penalty taken left-footed by Robin van Persie and scored. Aston Villa 0-1 Arsenal.Assist by Theo Walcott.
Mikel Arteta takes a inswinging corner to the near post, clearance made by Ciaran Clark.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Charles N'Zogbia on Francis Coquelin. Free kick taken by Aaron Ramsey.
Gabriel Agbonlahor delivers the ball, save by Wojciech Szczesny.
Corner taken left-footed by Charles N'Zogbia.
A cross is delivered by Charles N'Zogbia, Close range effort by Gabriel Agbonlahor clears the crossbar.
Inswinging corner taken by Mikel Arteta from the left by-line, save by Bradley Guzan.
The ball is crossed by Gabriel Agbonlahor, Wojciech Szczesny makes a save.
Francis Coquelin fouled by Gabriel Agbonlahor, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Francis Coquelin.
Gabriel Agbonlahor takes a shot. Save made by Wojciech Szczesny. Corner taken right-footed by Marc Albrighton from the left by-line, clearance made by Laurent Koscielny.
Corner taken by Charles N'Zogbia from the right by-line.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Theo Walcott by Stiliyan Petrov. Free kick taken by Aaron Ramsey.
Bannan expresses regret over drink-drive charge
Aston Villa midfielder Barry Bannan has admitted there would have been "no point in me living" had his drink-fuelled motorway crash resulted in any loss of life.
Bannan had an accident in his Range Rover Sport on the M1 near Watnall on October 23 while over the legal drink-drive limit. He fled the scene and was arrested in a taxi office.
The Scotland international, who only held a provisional licence, was fined #4,500 and banned from driving for 18 months.
Despite this, the midfielder believes he has had a lucky escape.
He said: "It still goes through my head now, it was a huge mistake and I regret everything I've done. It will never happen again.
"As much as I regret it, I'm so lucky to be still here today.
"If I hit another car and killed someone else, then there's no point in me living, really, after the things that would be going through my head.
"I'm lucky to be where I am today."
Bannan was speaking as the new face of the West Midlands Police `Christmas Don't Drink and Drive Campaign', and added that he won't be tempted to repeat his mistakes this festive season.
"It'll still be with me for the rest of my life in the back of my head," he said.
Villa manager Alex McLeish has backed Bannan to put the incident behind him and continue his football education.
McLeish said: "He's got to now totally concentrate and be totally professional and try to make himself the best he can possibly be."
The former Scotland boss also looked to set the record straight over Darren Bent, who despite being injured, was pictured shopping whilst Villa were taking on Liverpool on Sunday.
McLeish believes the club have moved on from the incident, but added that Bent should have remained at home for the entire duration of the match.
He said: "The lad was told to stay at home and rest. He was in here (at the club's training ground) for three or four hours on the day of the game.
"I think he watched most of the game, saw that we weren't going to win it and popped out to the shops. He was out of the house for about an hour. A massive fuss was the result of that.
"If he's guilty of anything then he's guilty of that - he should have stayed for the last 10 minutes."
Bent has not recovered from the thigh injury, while Chris Herd (ankle) will also be out.
Emile Heskey will be missing with an Achilles problem, while James Collins is doubtful for the game, having picked up a knee injury.
However, Gabriel Agbonlahor will return after serving a suspension against Liverpool.
Meanwhile, Laurent Koscielny has no problem helping ease Arsenal's injury crisis by playing at full-back, and has revealed that his friends have grown so accustomed to seeing him in the position that they have started calling him the "white Cafu".
Arsenal head to Aston Villa without any recognised full-backs after a spate of injuries denied Arsene Wenger the services of Kieran Gibbs, Andre Santos, Bacary Sagna and Carl Jenkinson.
Johan Djourou played at right-back in Sunday's 1-0 defeat at Manchester City but he had to come off in the second half after suffering a groin injury and will now be out for three weeks.
Wenger heads to Villa Park with Per Mertesacker, Thomas Vermaelen, Koscielny, Sebastien Squillaci and Ignasi Miquel as his only fit defenders - all of whom are primarily centre-backs.
Koscielny has filled in at right-back with varying degrees of success this season, but he insists he is happy playing there and has joked that his friends have become so used to seeing him in the position that they have started making comparisons between him and legendary Brazil right-back Cafu.
"My mates tease me calling me the white Cafu," Koscielny told the Official Arsenal Magazine.
"It's a position I knew as I started as a professional in France at left full-back. At the time, I was playing with Guingamp in the second division and I was very young.
"Obviously, it is not my favourite position but I am happy to help the team and do my best there."
Arsenal will be without Alex Song at Villa Park as he is serving a one-match suspension for collecting five yellow cards this season.
Not all bright on the night
Aston Villa winger Marc Albrighton scored the 20,000th goal in the Barclays Premier League but a late header from Arsenal substitute Yossi Benayoun earned his side a 2-1 victory at Villa Park.
Albrighton's milestone effort came nine minutes into the second half after a mistake by Gunners defender Thomas Vermaelen.
Arsenal striker Robin van Persie had equalled Thierry Henry's club record of 34 for the most Premier League goals in a calendar year before Benayoun's 87th minute decider.
Villa defender Alan Hutton was sent off in injury-time for two bookable offences.
Villa have donated the 20,000 cheque from Barclays for the 20,000th goal to their official charity partner, the Acorns children's hospice.
The result was harsh for Alex McLeish's side, who produced their best home performance of the campaign, with Charles N'Zogbia having one of his more influential games.
But their inability to defend set pieces proved costly as Benayoun headed in a corner from Van Persie as Arsenal moved level on points with fifth placed Chelsea.
The home side were the first to threaten and it needed a fine save from Wojciech Szczesny to prevent Gabriel Agbonlahor giving them a sixth-minute lead.
N'Zogbia floated the ball in the Gunners box after a one-two with Marc Albrighton and Agbonlahor's header from close range was parried by Szczesny.
Villa looked more aggressive and committed than against Liverpool at the weekend
N'Zogbia was looking lively and got the better of Francis Coquelin before delivering a cross to the near post.
Agbonlahor was first to react but Aaron Ramsey got in an important block.
It was against the run of play when Van Persie put Arsenal ahead.
Clark tugged at the short of Theo Walcott inside the box and referee Jonathan Moss pointed to the penalty spot.
Up stepped Van Persie to hammer the spot kick into the roof of the net.
Walcott could have made it 2-0 after running onto Van Persie's pass.
But Brad Guzan was alert and raced out of his box to block the shot with his chest.
N'Zogbia was having one of his best games for Villa and he nutmegged Coquelin before sending him a teasing cross which eluded everyone.
Coquelin became the first player to be yellow carded after 28 minutes for a mis-timed challenge on N'Zogbia.
Ramsay should have done better in an Arsenal counter-attack when he shot well wide after a Van Persie flick on.
Clark was booked after 38 minutes for a foul on Mikel Arteta and then Per Mertesacker was yellow carded for checking the run of N'Zogbia.
Villa continued to do most of the pressing at the start of the second period.
Szczesny was forced into a hurried clearance under pressure from Albrighton.
When Arsenal counter-attacked Per Mertesacker failed to make proper contact on his shot from a Walcott cross.
But after 54 minutes a mistake by Vermaelen allowed Albrighton to score the 20,000th goal since the Premier League began nearly 20 years ago.
The Villa winger kept his cool before sliding the ball wide of Szczesny.
Arsenal retaliated instantly and Guzan produced a superb save to deny Mertesacker in a counter-attack.
They forced a string of corners in quick succession but Villa held firm.
Van Persie was booked after 78 minutes for diving in the Villa box.
Dunne produced another vital interception to block a shot from Rosicky and substitute Andrey Arshavin had a shot deflected over the bar.
But then Benayoun broke Villa's hearts as he was left with a free header inside the box from Van Persie's corner.
Hutton was booked for a foul on Van Persie and then sent off in injury-time for a second yellow card offence on Vermaelen.
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