Arsenal overcame Stoke’s impression of Barcelona with relative ease yesterday, here’s how the players rated…
Wojciech Szczesny: 7/10 – While he couldn’t do anything about Stoke’s goal, he’ll no doubt still be annoyed that another clean sheet has gone begging given he had little to do. Probably the first time he’s played Stoke and not had to worry about long throws, long balls, Peter Crouch etc.
Bacary Sagna: 7.5/10 – His headed goal (his first since the 5-2 against Spurs 19 months ago) capped off another solid display at right-back. Always on hand to direct debutant Serge Gnabry and rarely put on the back foot by Stoke.
Kieran Gibbs: 7/10 – Provided much needed attacking width given Wilshere’s tendency to stray from the left flank. A bread and butter performance at the back.
Per Mertesacker: 7/10 – Caught out by Nzonzi’s lofted ball to Arnautovic in the build-up to Cameron’s goal the BFG found redemption by boshing a header past Begovic to restore the lead. Half marked lost for part in Stoke’s equaliser regained for this.
Laurent Koscielny: 7/10 – Took responsibility for carrying the ball out of defence in the first half when Stoke packed the midfield, his defensive contribution was understated…it didn’t need to be anything more.
Mathieu Flamini: 8.5/10 – Played like a rabid dog…in a good way. Barked orders at teammates, bit into tackles and spent much of the game fucking the legs of Stoke players. As Arsene joked after the game he and Ozil cost £21m each…
Aaron Ramsey: 8/10 – Continued his scoring run with a very tidy left foot finish and earns an Arseblog News bonus half point for standing on Walters (?) ankle in the process. Tidy on the ball all game and nearly grabbed a second goal deep into injury-time.
Jack Wilshere: 7/10 – The boy just can’t help but throw his not-quite-fully-fit body on the line. It’s admirable in a way, but also frightening to watch. Still not quite his best but saw determined dribbles draw fouls which led to first and third goals. Needs a little break now.
Serge Gnabry: 6.5/10 – Very promising showing given how late he was selected. Kept it simple in the first half and grew in confidence in the second having a decent pop at goal from long range. Had to cut onto his left peg from the right-flank which narrowed game a bit. Survived an assault by compatriot Huth.
Mesut Ozil: 7.5/10 – A diligent and artisanal performance rather than artistic. He played a part in all three goals without resorting to his YouTube reel of slide-rule passes and delicate touches. Looked knackered as he trudged off to a standing ovation having created seven shooting chances.
Olivier Giroud: 7/10 – His touch wasn’t quite as sure as it has been this term but he battled for every ball with Shawcross and Huth. Didn’t get much service on a day when the team tired in the second half although did unleash a rasping shot from the edge of the box which forced Begovic to tip over.
Nacho Monreal: 6/10 – Arsenal’s de-facto left midfield substitute at the moment, he helped stem the threat from Stoke’s right.
Ryo Miyaichi: 6/10 – A lively 15 minutes including a decent run on the outside which resulted in a deep cross. A more natural right winger than Gnabry.
Mikel Arteta: 6/10 – Off the bench to a rousing reception for his first ten minutes of the season he was as metronomic and perfectly coiffured as ever.17,574 views