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Martin Keown praises Arsenal trio after Aston Villa win but calls title talk ‘ridiculous’

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After the Gunners resumed their winning streak against Aston Villa, Martin Keown was all praise for three players, but he called it “crazy” to call his old team “title contenders” after only five games.

With a 2-1 victory over Aston Villa, Arsenal continued their unbeaten start to the year and preserved the top spot in the Premier League.

Gabriel Jesus’ first-half goal was cancelled out by Douglas Luiz’ corner, beating Aaron Ramsdale, but Gabriel Martinelli made sure Villa’s comeback was short-lived by scoring the game’s winning goal in the second half.

Keown praised the “character and personality” that Arsenal displayed to make it five wins in a row and singled out Albert Sambi Lokonga, Granit Xhaka, and Kieran Tierney for special mention.

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After Arsenal’s victory at the Emirates, Keown told BT Sport, “It’s a terrific run Arsenal are on right now.” “I truly liked the charm and character they displayed tonight.”

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After Villa tied the score, it may have collapsed, but Arsenal is getting stronger and stronger. I must bring up Lokonga; he hasn’t received much attention, but despite having a couple injuries, he has performed admirably.

‘Xhaka as well in the midfield, that was one of his best games for Arsenal. Tierney was also great, no one is talking about [injured summer signing Oleksandr] Zinchenko tonight because of that performance.’

Arsenal’s superb start to the Premier League season has sparked excitement over a potential title challenge in north London.

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Keown ‘hopes this is the start or something special’ at his former club but says it is too early to consider the Gunners as a genuine threat to defending champions Manchester City.

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He added: ‘It’s step by step with this Arsenal team. It’s so early in the season, it’s ridiculous [to call them title contenders]. It’s a new team but hopefully it’s the start of something special.’

 

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While Arsenal remain top of the table, Aston Villa’s defeat leaves them second from bottom with three points from a possible 15.

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