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Morning Mix: Villa eyeing more home comforts, Chelsea star must send a message to Southgate

Friday is here again which means it is time for Morning Mix’ – our weekly football column with a bit of music thrown in for good measure.

We look at two major talking points for the weekend ahead and point you in the direction of some of the best football stories elsewhere on the internet.

We also offer a top tune recommendation to get you in the mood for the weekend and what to watch out for over the coming days. Let’s get this show on the road!

Villa eyeing more home comforts

Two injury-time goals helped Arsenal secure a 4-2 victory at Aston Villa in February. Since then, the Midlands outfit have rattled off 12 home wins in a row.

Only Manchester City (15) and Atletico Madrid (14) are on longer winning home runs in Europe’s top leagues, highlighting how formidable they have become at Villa Park.

A victory over Fulham on Sunday would see Villa match the 13-game winning record set by the club in 1983, and they look a good bet to achieve the feat.

We’ve said it before, but we’ll repeat it. Unai Emery is doing a remarkable job with Villa.

Chelsea star must send a message to Southgate

There was something slightly distasteful about England manager Gareth Southgate warning Reece James he isn’t guaranteed a spot at next summer’s European Championship in midweek.

James rejected the chance to be part of the squad for the Three Lions’ upcoming qualifiers against Malta and North Macedonia – a sensible move given both games are dead-rubbers.

The Chelsea defender has struggled with a succession of injuries, so it makes perfect sense for him not to take any chances in a pair of meaningless matches.

He has the perfect chance to send a message to Southgate about his value to the England set-up when the Blues host Manchester City this weekend.

The week that was

Are you looking for the best football stories from the past week? Check these out:

Today’s top tune

The Reytons’ working-class style has fired them up the music ladder over the past couple of years, and their meteoric rise shows no signs of slowing down.

Their latest single ‘Market Street’ catches the Yorkshire band in a slightly more reflective mood. It’s another cracker!

What to watch this week

Injuries and dismissals ruined Tottenham Hotspur’s chances of taking anything from their game against Chelsea last weekend.

Their trip to Wolverhampton Wanderers tomorrow will not be easy and will tell us a lot about whether they can cope with adversity.

A final Morning Mix thought

Four points in eleven games does not make pretty reading for Burnley manager Vincent Kompany, particularly given the club’s outlay on new players during the summer.

The Clarets face Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium tomorrow ahead of what is supposed to be a ‘favourable run of games’ in the run-up to Christmas.

If his team don’t start picking up points, Kompany will be gone before the turkey comes out of the oven.

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