The incredible Premier League table since Aston Villa appointed Unai Emery

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Aston Villa head coach Unai Emery during the Premier League match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Aston Villa at the American Express Community Stadium , Brighton , UK - 13th November 2022

Only Arsenal and Manchester City have taken more points than Aston Villa since Unai Emery was appointed Steven Gerrard’s successor back in November.

Emery, who left La Liga outfit Villarreal to take the job at Villa Park, has made an exceptional start to the job. The Spanish coach has masterminded 11 wins and just four defeats from his 17 Premier League matches in charge of the club.

When Gerrard was sacked back in October, Villa were languishing near the relegation zone, having won just two of their opening 11 matches.

“It didn’t end well for him at Arsenal but I still don’t think you can poke holes in his pedigree. You’re talking about a guy who’s won the Europa League four times. I think he’s a really, really good coach,” former Villa striker Darren Bent told talkSPORT when asked about the appointment of Emery.

“He had the whole Ozil situation to deal with as well which went against him. I don’t think you win the trophies that he’s won if you’re not a good coach.

“You can say what you want about his time at Arsenal, but it was always going to be hard coming in after Arsene Wenger. I think it’s the right appointment. I’d say I’m excited about it.”

Bent’s optimism has since been vindicated. The club have dramatically shot up the table then, with results under Emery seeing the club emphatically out of the relegation conversation.

Aston Villa are now up to sixth, ahead of Liverpool and big-spending Chelsea, and can have genuine ambitions of qualifying for European competition if they can keep up this momentum.

The one low point so far came with a last-gasp 2-1 defeat at home to Stevenage in the FA Cup, but Emery’s side responded admirably with back-to-back league wins over Leeds United and Southampton and have maintained their excellent 2023 since.

“First we have to be consistent in the top 10,” Emery said following their last-gasp 2-1 victory over Leicester City.

“We can add another step of thinking to be a candidate in the European positions but it is going to be difficult because Brighton and Brentford are playing very well. We are now with them.

“Chelsea and Liverpool have to be in Europe next year. They will fight for it but we can have ambition and motivation to try to be a candidate.

“We are going to be very demanding and not relax or stop.”

To illustrate how good the results have been under Emery, take a look at how the Premier League table shapes up since he was appointed at the start of November.

Note: all teams have played 17 games unless otherwise specified.

1. Arsenal – 41 points, GD +24 (played 17)
2. Manchester City – 38 points, GD +22
3. Aston Villa – 35 points, GD +10
4. Manchester United – 33 points, GD +6
5. Newcastle United – 32 points, GD +13 (played 16)
6. Brighton – 28 points, GD +12 (played 16)
7. Brentford – 28 points, GD +10
8. Liverpool – 27 points, GD +7
9. Tottenham – 27 points, GD +3
10. Wolves – 21 points, GD -5
11. Fulham – 20 points, GD -1 (played 16)
12. Chelsea – 18 points, GD -4 (played 18)
13. Nottingham Forest – 18 points, GD -8
14. Leeds United – 17 points, GD -7
15. Bournemouth – 17 points, GD -13
16. West Ham – 16 points, GD -10 (played 16)
17. Leicester – 14 points, GD -8
18. Crystal Palace – 14 points, GD -12
19. Everton – 13 points, GD -19
20. Southampton – 11 points, GD -18

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