Aston Villa 1 - 2 Arsenal

Match info: Premier League at Villa Park

Date: 13/01/2014 KO: 20:00 Ref: Att: 36,097

Home team/scorers Scores Away team/scorers

A Villa

Christian Benteke 76



Jack Wilshere 34
Olivier Giroud 35

FT (ht: 0-2)

  • Last Updated: January 13 2014, 23:06 GMT

Post-match reaction to Arsenal's 2-1 victory over Aston Villa.

Wilshere: Gunners still grounded

Jack Wilshere insists Arsenal are not getting carried away after they returned to the top of the Barclays Premier League with a 2-1 win over Aston Villa.

The Gunners were 2-0 up after scoring twice in as many minutes through Wilshere and Olivier Giroud but Christian Benteke grabbed one back with 16 minutes to go to set up a tense finish.

The result means every team in the top seven has won over the weekend and Wilshere does not believe his team-mates will get ahead of themselves.

"We've just got to take each game as it comes, we know we're top of the league," he told Sky Sports 1.

"We've had a game every three days up to now and now we've got a week off so it's important we get our rest in."

He added: "It's a massive three points.

"It was interesting in the second half when Villa came at us. We've done that a lot this season. We seem to drop a bit and let teams come onto us in the second half but we dealt with it well and we're showing that side of our game.

"Hopefully we can continue that for the rest of the season.

"When we're up against it this season, we've got Per (Mertesacker) and (Laurent) Koscielny at the back who have been brilliant.

"It's not easy to deal with Benteke with (Gabriel) Agbonlahor running off him but they've done it well tonight."

As well as getting on the scoresheet himself, Wilshere set up the goal for Giroud and, while he admits he would rather play in an attacking role, he will do whatever is needed for the team.

"I'm not really a defensive midfielder," he said. "I'd say I was an attacking midfielder and if you're going to be one of them you're going to have to create and score goals.

"I looked at it this season and I came back from injury last season and this season I really had to push on on that front.

"In this team we've got great competition and it's important that we rotate a lot.

"Sometimes I'm going to have to play wide, sometimes I'll play in the middle but as long as the team is playing well and we get the three points, that's all that matters."

Manager Arsene Wenger reiterated Wilshere's words and wants Arsenal just to focus on their own performances.

"Let's take care of our performances and you have to go forward always and get the points and see if you make a difference with the other teams," he said.

On Monday night's performance, he added: "The first half was more about playing and the second half was more about fighting.

"We got the answer even if we had some dangerous situations in front of goal.

"We have shown again that we have both sides of the game.

"In the first half our passing gave them many problems and we could maybe have scored one or two more."

Villa lost Nathan Baker to a nasty-looking head injury midway through the first half but boss Paul Lambert confirmed after the game that the central defender seemed fine.

"He's okay," he said. "I've just spoken to him there but he couldn't remember a thing.

"When you get a concussion that's dangerous, so the best thing to do was to take him off."

Lambert admitted that the loss of Baker affected his team but he was delighted with their second-half performance.

"We were the better side in the second half and we got the goal which I think we deserved," he added.

"We hemmed then in, which is not an easy thing to do.

"In the first half we lost Nathan at a really poor time and that rocked us a bit. And then the two goals one after the other certainly put us on the back foot but the response in the second half, I can't compliment them highly enough on that.

"It was a blow but I've just been told he was out cold and concussed, which was a blow for us because he's been playing well. But you've got to readjust.

"But second half, I can't fault them with the way they played there."

Lambert also refused to rule out a move for striker Grant Holt in the transfer window after the Wigan frontman did so well for him at Norwich.

"There's things going on at the minute with a few and we'll try to get people in," he said.

"I know Grant from my Norwich days and he was absolutely brilliant for us. It's a couple of years later down the line and we'll see."

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