Express & Star

Diego Carlos explains key Aston Villa factor to success

Diego Carlos has called on Villa to keep their feet on the ground as they aim to follow up beating the Premier League champions by taking down leaders Arsenal.


The defender insists any celebrations after Wednesday’s 1-0 win over Manchester City were short-lived with the focus quickly shifting to tomorrow’s visit of the Gunners.

One of the finest performances by a Villa team in years led to City boss Pep Guardiola declaring Villa title contenders.

Carlos, much like head coach Unai Emery, believes such a claim is premature as he warned they will need to conjure a repeat of Wednesday’s performance if they are to end the week on a winning note.

“Wednesday was a good challenge for us and to win, we are very happy,” he said. “But the next game will be the same, very difficult. We will try to put in the same performance as we did against City.

“We are a good team. From the first day Unai came here he has improved the team and the players.

“Now, we are in a good position in the table but the season is not finished. There are lots of games still to play. For me, personally, it is about continuing our work every day. That is important to playing well.”

A win for Villa would be their 15th in a row at home in the league, breaking a club record which has stood for 120 years.

February’s 4-2 defeat to the Gunners is the last time they were beaten on home turf in the top flight, a defeat which drew an angry reaction from Emery and a reassessment of his team’s approach at Villa Park. Their record since has been perfect.

“We have confidence every game,” said Carlos. “Not just because we won on Wednesday. Every player has confidence we can improve on each game.

“I know the challenge against Arsenal. Wednesday was celebration, Thursday is about recovery and on Friday, we get to work focusing on Arsenal.

“It’s very important to stay humble and grounded. This for me is most important. For me, every game and every day I do that. You have to stay humble, respect the team you play against.

“Villa Park is special for me, for everyone. The team is happy with the fans. Every win is for them.”