Arsenal 1-0 Newcastle – player ratings

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arsenal 1-0 newcastle

It was nice to get back to winning ways, even if the performance wasn’t quite as impressive as we might have liked.

A sensational first half goal from Mesut Ozil (read the report and see the goal here) won the game for the Gunners, but it was a bit precarious without the cushion of scoring again.

Here’s how the players rated today.

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Monkey knees
Monkey knees

No Rambo or Theo so Xhaka the go to scapegoat. Nowhere near as bad as people are saying. Is out of form, and would do us all good to change things up on MF and bench him for a game or 2.

Rich
Rich

Xhaka was sloppy and should have been given a straight red.

Hamburg Gooner
Hamburg Gooner

For what? being Xhaka?

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

Yep, and disgracefully…. Breathing!

Gooner
Gooner

Ur a disgusting human being…

Sheffield Gooner
Sheffield Gooner

You should see the leg breaker that Kane just got away with against Citeh.

Sheffield Gooner
Sheffield Gooner

And now Alli too. Jesus the refs love those Spuds English boys.

Badaab
Badaab

Alli gets away with diving every single week, just like Sterling.

TomNelsonAFC
TomNelsonAFC

Don’t forget to credit BTsport for ignoring the incident as much as they could!

A Different George
A Different George

On the American feed, all the commentators (including Lee Dixon) thought both Kane and Alli should have been sent off.

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

And Alli, and Dier again!

PFo
PFo

I thought Xhaka was excellent for most of the match, certainly in the first half (the same couldn’t be said for some others, notably Alexis and Bellerin). He then made a number of glaring errors near the end of the match, but he wasn’t the only one, as we completely lost our composure in the last 20 minutes (the all-too-predictable and uninspired subs didn’t help).

Xhaka’s not half as bad as people think he is, and also not as bad as he’s been playing for much of the season, but he suffers from (a) a lack of in-game maturity and composure, and (b) not really being a defensive midfielder in a team that regularly leaves deep midfield exposed (and of course, as everyone knows, he’s incredibly slow).

Girouds Lovely Locks
Girouds Lovely Locks

The issue with Xhaka is that he has been very consistent in misplacing passes in those final 20 minutes of matches. Consistent enough where it’s become a trend for him.

caligunner
caligunner

I understand what you are saying about Xhaka. Last 10 games of last season showed how good he can be when he is in form but we’re almost 20 games played in the Prem. He just doesn’t seem good enough at least to be a fullltime starter. If we do get a proper Defensive Mid I would rather have someone more with Santi ability of course but the next best thing someone like Wilshere or Ramsey instead.

Matt+P
Matt+P

Just watched the game and agree with that. He was very good most of the game, for me a 6 (would have been a 7 save for a slippy last 10 minutes)

SB Still
SB Still

Xhaka doesn’t feel any competition for his place like a num of other players, they know Wenger is faithful to a fault, he would even defend them all even after a performance like the ones against West Ham, Southampton, etc.

AMN should be given a chance to be the understudy in his natural position and Wenger should let him put some pressure on Xhaka for the place on form.

PFo
PFo

Agree about Xhaka and AMN, but the exact same thing could be said about Bellerin and AMN…

Flummoxed
Flummoxed

Yeah but AMN natural position is in midfield rather than as a defender.

Samgunz
Samgunz

I would at least like to see AMN given a chance at RB as well, Bellerin could easily be dropped instead of Kolasinac. But for sure he should be the future big strong physical midfielder we have been needing for sometime. Would love to see him with Jack, they both, including Iwobi play the true wenger ball to perfection, as you’d expect from the youth programme.

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

Wrong about Kolasinac.
Bellerin and Kolasinac, they both should be dropped to the bench for getting way too lazy to track back when we are countered.
I like to agree with you on the future of our midfield trio but I find Iwobi (as much as he’s very gifted technically), running out of steam after half time. Now, in my book, that’s not a very good stamina

Samgunz
Samgunz

Xhaka was great 1st half, pretty shaky the 2nd, but our finishing was piss poor through out, in that sense some of the attacking players should probably get as bad a rating. More goals = less shaky. Kozza equally had a solid 1st half and shaky 2nd, Bellerin also, picking out xhaka is just easy/lazy analysis. As for Wilshere he was the kog, he did an advanced Cazorla type display, one of which Ramsey isn’t naturally accustomed to, and it helped Xhaka especially in the first half. Sanchez should have gone off earlier instead of Lacazette. End of.

GoonerJust
GoonerJust

Why do we discuss Kane and Alli in this forum????????

Oh, I forgot citeh trashed the spuds 4-1, oke then let’s continue to discuss the spuds. LoL

A Different George
A Different George

If you saw the match, the score very much flattered Spurs–Sterling missed a tap-in or two (before he got a tap-in) and Lloris made a bunch of fine saves. City were much better against them than they were against us (and they were pretty good against us).

CuriousGeorgeGraham
CuriousGeorgeGraham

Feel that we aren’t even trying at times to find Lacazette in the final third, especially when we have full control of the ball and most of our players in the opposition half. He can clearly finish when he has chances, but midfield and Alexis/Ozil just seem to ignore him.

AmericanGooner
AmericanGooner

I remember in the summer with the contract issues when everyone (including myself) said they weren’t worried about Alexis because he loves football and gives 110% no matter what. I didnt want to pass judgement too swiftly, but that seems to be out the window now. He gives the ball up much easier than he used to and doesn’t have that ‘dog without a bone’ mentality when he does lose it.

Arsene really needs to have a talk to get the best out of him again.

Javelin+Accident
Javelin+Accident

I thought he was just as frustrating last season, in terms of losing the ball. His numerous goals and assists saw people look past his errors though.

Badaab
Badaab

Alexis is trying to do it all himself. He needs to understand there are ten other Arsenal players on the field with him, and if he’s not going to pass, then he should be sat on the bench. His biggest contribution in the match was getting back in the second half for a tackle on the left wing. Otherwise, his insistence of dribbling into the middle leaves us entirely too narrow, forcing the LB to run beyond. This exposes the LB position on counter attack after Alexis loses possession on the edge of the box. Against a stronger side, we’d have been punished for this today. This sort of play may work more easily if we’re playing a back 3, but with a back 4, it doesn’t suit the rest of the side, and leaves us unbalanced and narrow, making it entirely too easy for teams to park the bus on the edge of the box (along with all our other attackers standing there like statues, but that’s another conversation).

A Different George
A Different George

He may be playing badly, but I see absolutely nothing to indicate he is not playing all out. Watch Ozil’s goal and tell me that Alexis is not trying as much as he ever did.

Matt+P
Matt+P

I thought Alexis played quite well. At least a 6 if not a 7. His pressure was instrumental in Ozil’s goal, he worked hard and created a couple of half-chances

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

Alexis is not a Baby ? in nursery, for Arsène to have a talk with him every week, and get into his scull the importance of each game. If my manager would pull me in his office twice inside a month, I’d be sacked.
Alexis earns £150K a week, fully grown adult. He needs to sort out his hormonal disarray

PFo
PFo

Ozil looks, but Alexis doesn’t. How many promising attacking positions were spoiled today because Alexis insisted on taking 6 touches to switch it back on his right foot, only to try a shot which got blocked or that patented (occasionally dangerous but increasingly predictable) chip over to Bellerin?

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

Absolutely. But people see what they want to see.
Certain fans are all too fast of having a pop at incapable players (least talented), but never on Sanchez. They ignore the fact what he is capable of doing and what he’s actually doing. There’s a massive discrepancy.
He’s stopped playing for us long time ago.
So so many touches in front of the goal. In my opinion, he wants to score spectacular goals and hoping for the goal of season competition.
And us fans, sitting/standing in stadium and having heart attack after heart attack every time he touches the ball

Schmitty
Schmitty

Well, I suppose he can finish when given the chance….. although he did have a few chances today and still didn’t take them well. And this seems to be a common problem in the team anyways. Nobody ever tries to find Giroud, even though the number of goals he’s scores shows that he can obviously put them away. But since he’s not the type of striker to run around in circles, nobody cares. Not to pit them against each other, but clearly our strikers don’t get enough service, which doesn’t seem to be a thing that is ever obviously addressed

Brian from Ohio
Brian from Ohio

It would be nice to have strikers, or anyone for that matter, who can put the ball in the net. Not enough pure finishers on this team.

Gooneron
Gooneron

Xhaka needs to be dropped . Maitland Niles is really doing good now. Reminds me of Coq when he took his chance.

PFo
PFo

Not as strong in the challenges as Coq, but much, much more skillful and composed with the ball at his feet.

Michael Bolton Wanderers
Michael Bolton Wanderers

He’s so composed and calm he almost looks lazy. I mean that in a good way

A Different George
A Different George

I must be watching a different match. I saw Maitland-Niles make a couple of exciting runs, good dribbles past defenders, then lose the ball due to poor judgment–a weak shot, a run into too many defenders, etc. Great talent, great promise, not quite ready.

Badaab
Badaab

AMN is more akin to Aaron Ramsey when played in central midfield- he runs at the opposition, and is always busy. He really needs a run next to someone who sits in CMF… I’m going to say that’s likely Elneny if we’re to see the best of AMN in his natural position.

PFo
PFo

Disagree. I’ve seen him sit and dictate well (e.g. against Southampton in the cup last year).

GiddyForZelalem
GiddyForZelalem

Serious question: who would you rather have coming off the bench, Danny Welbeck or Theo Walcott? I’d rather Walcott. 108 career goals playing as a winger, pacey and can get to the byline or cut inside and combine well with the forward. Welbeck meanwhile has only exceeded ten goals twice in his career and makes Walcott look like a natural born footballer when he’s on the ball.

Arse-Head
Arse-Head

Rather see Reiss Nelson coming on than either of them tbh

GiddyForZelalem
GiddyForZelalem

What has Reiss Nelson proved? You take an 18yo kid when you need a goal over a professional with over 400 apps and over a hundred goals? Fuck off

George H
George H

Yeah, fuck off, how dare you not have the same opinion

WineArse
WineArse

Yeah, 400 appearances and only he’s only run the ball out of play 6,712 times. Sign him up until he’s 50.

PFo
PFo

It’s not so simple, and depends on the game. Horses for courses and all that.

I’m a big Danny fan and I can’t stand Theo (the footballer; the man seems alright), but even I think Theo would have made a useful sub in the last two games, with our nominal “wide forwards” making our play far too narrow, and no one really running in behind.

Danny’s not been in great form since he came back from injury, and he’s actually made our play worse the last two games when he’s been subbed on.

kas
kas

Have you seen the Japanese guy ‘Asana I think) we have on loan @ Stuttgart. his finishing is as bad or worse than Welbeck’s! Methinks if we ever get a new manager he has so much dross to clear out.

King+Kolo
King+Kolo

Glad to see AMN showing his worth. It was a few Arsecasts ago that they weren’t sure what he did. But I think this is the one to watch. He played well at times for Ipswich as a young winger… tackles well, very quick, passes well between the lines, he has a bit of guile and a good shot on him too etc etc… I don’t see why with his attributes he shouldn’t be come as good as Kante in that midfield position.

PFo
PFo

He’ll have to get stronger than he currently is, and read the game even better (not that he reads it poorly now), if he wants to be at Kante’s level. But I see the point: he’s very quick and very mobile and very tidy on the ball, but also clearly has the basic attributes to be a very effective ball-winner.

Personally–in the absence of Ramsey and assuming we’re going to stay 4-3-3 for a while–I’d bring Kola back in, play AMN alongside Xhaka and Jack in midfield, and push Ozil back forward onto the right hand side in place of Iwobi (who I like, but who’s clogging our midfield at the moment), thus reuniting the AOL trio up front.

Ars
Ars

Bellerin , xhaka and iwobi should be dropped

PFo
PFo

There’s a case to be made for all three, but certainly dropping Hector is a no brainer at this point. He needs a rest, mentally as much as physically, a chance to get his confidence back up, and a reminder that he’s not undroppable.

Badaab
Badaab

He’ll get midweek off, with someone like Debuchy coming into the side for the league cup match. Hopefully he can clear his head and come back a stronger positional player and keep his concentration for the full 90.

PFo
PFo

It’s not just concentration. He looks slower, shorn of confidence when attacking in the final third, and frankly very stupid/sloppy on the ball a lot of the time.

A Different George
A Different George

I thought Bellerin had his best match in a while, certainly in the first half.

Bai Blagoi
Bai Blagoi

What wrong did you manage to find in Bellerin and Iwobi?!

Goonerink
Goonerink

I am a massive fan of welbeck, his athleticism is something I thought would carry him past giroud in our scoring numbers….

But he just stood still most of the time he was on….

Osi
Osi

Welbeck is useless on the right. Play him on the left or central to get anything out of him

Badaab
Badaab

Same can be said for most of our forward players in the last 3 matches: they just stand there on the edge of the 18 and it drives me mad.

Walenaija
Walenaija

For your information, only Walcott and Ramsey do off-the-ball-run behind defense. Bellerin did it yesterday though.

eternalflamini
eternalflamini

Sign da ting jack

Jackieboy
Jackieboy

If there was a ‘ting’ to sign yes…

Assshavin
Assshavin

Did anybody else notice the blatant elbow Xhaka gave to one of their players? Honestly thought he should have seen a red card for it. For someone Wenger has praised for his intelligence, he seems to be making alot of dumb mistakes.

Kwame Ampadu Down
Kwame Ampadu Down

Assshavin, rule number 1 on here : don’t say anything (even if 100% true) that doesn’t play into the childish ‘the refs are all against Arsenal’ narrative.

On the game….a win is a win. Nothing else really worth saying.

Olivije Zirou
Olivije Zirou

@Kwame Ampadu down how many elbows wheb oppositions made are even fouls and red cards?

This year I am making an evidence and at least 15 stonewall decision went against us this year (penalties not given, offsides, penalties which were given to others but were dives) .

Serpent
Serpent

Saw it, thought it was a nailed-on red, relieved that it was only a yellow. With only ten on the field, they might’ve equalised.

TomNelsonAFC
TomNelsonAFC

Was more of an arm than an elbow, i do think it was a yellow.

PGunner
PGunner

Worrying form from Bellerin, Sanchez and Xhaka. Well played Özil (brilliant goal!) and Maitland-Niles!

InTheNorthBank
InTheNorthBank

Bellerin was shocking. Can’t understand the rating here. Gave the ball away relentlessly and was half asleep defensively. A good right back/wing back in a team dominating, but a weak link in a team under pressure. He needs a break but we have nobody to replace him!

Kevin
Kevin

Debuchy!

InTheNorthBank
InTheNorthBank

In a back 4, maybe. Never as a wing back though. He’s creaking!

PFo
PFo

1. We’ve played a back four the last two games, so I don’t see why we necessarily need a wing back
2. The obvious one is the right-footed AMN on the right, with Kola back in on the left.

Ivan Parasite
Ivan Parasite

Reiss!

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

Not a fullback. Not even a wing back.

gooner1981
gooner1981

We’re prone to lapses in concentration. We need someone to be more vocal in the middle of the field; keep everyone focused. Would love to see AMN playing in the midfield. Love his composure and attitude- he seems unfazed by the occasion, which is a very good thing for a young player. Plus he has pace to burn. Not the most attractive of wins, but we have the precious 3 points in the bag.

TomNelsonAFC
TomNelsonAFC

Him or willock, thought willock did a solid job in the europa league, only way he is going to progress is by playing against premiership players.

Carlos _ Santana
Carlos _ Santana

Yes let’s see Niles in the mid!

Brent
Brent

I was sure the extra 10/10 was going to be for the shot of Robert Pires in the stands. I have no idea what Welbeck is doing/supposed to be doing out there.

Atom
Atom

pretty painful 2nd half but great to win & what a goal. if you throw out city it’s a little like the lecester year where no team actually looks good. sneaking into 4th a real possibility which would be great for much needed rebuild that’s coming soon

Indian+Gooner
Indian+Gooner

Was just the Man City game. Boy! How well do they pass the ball?!
Playing good passing football and making sure you don’t over play it.. is an art to be learnt from!

Olivije Zirou
Olivije Zirou

I am fuming with anger because half of the people clearly don’t know how to watch football!

Xhaka was one of the best players on the pitch till the 80th minute. We lost the midfield because Iwobi injured himself and Wilshere got tired. After that Xhaka got exposed and also he wasn’t fresh either. Then he missplaced a few passes BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN HE HAD A BAD GAME. Sadly that’s the only thing some see. He was brilliant for the first 60 minutes. Do you know that boring boring passing in their 3rd? We can maintain to control the ball so good mainly because of Xhaka. Because he can pick quick first passes and how to move in those places.

The whole defensive line was great today. Do you know why Wenger prefer Nacho infront of Chambers? Because he is quicker and his best abillity is intercepting the ball and get the ball. We do that in their half! Bellerin also had a very fine game. Maybe not so good going forward but great in the defensive aspect of it. And that is why Wenger plays Bellerin – because he may not be the best attacking RB and many times frustrating but he is one of the best when it comes to defending. But still I think he should be afraid of his place. Niles really progressed in the last few months. Lovely player to watch.

We didn’t have a bad game like many said. Do you think we can maintain that tempo we had in the 1st half for the whole game? We had a brilliant 60 minutes and is completly natural our game dropped. Atm our only big problem is finishing. We just can’t score a goal.

Matt+P
Matt+P

Agree I also thought Xhaka was excellent for most of the game. Yet he gets slammed for a couple of sloppy passes yet jack gets next to no criticism for missing a sitter (btw I thought Jack played well too).

Merlin\'s Panini
Merlin\'s Panini

We’ve seen Wenger play people out of position with a view to putting them elsewhere before. Putting Maitland Niles in ar fullback is probably to teach him how he can best protect the defence as a central midfielder later on.
He seems pretty switched on though so I’d be interested in seeing him in the middle.

assistantref
assistantref

Terrible subs from Arsene almost cost the game, we lost all our momentum at that point and amazingly managed to be on the back foot against one of the worst teams in the league for the last 20 minutes.

InTheNorthBank
InTheNorthBank

We had momentum?

Bai Blagoi
Bai Blagoi

What subs would you do instead?

I AM ARSENAL
I AM ARSENAL

How bad do Xhaxa and Bellerin have to be to get dropped…Try Niles out on The right and bring Kola back in on the left..Speaking of Niles very impressive today. Much better passer of the ball than Bellerin and Kolasinac (watch how many times he picked Ozil or Wilshere out in great positions)
Sanchez was improved today, a couple of key challenges and he made a decisive defensive block where he chased past other players whose actual job it was.
Iwobi continues to frustrate…Everything is good than he gets into or around the box.
May be the first game i cursed Lacazettes name, twice!! but he was still good overall..His movement is superb.
Jacks back..He and Ozil operated on a different level to the rest of the team.
A run of games over the season and he will only get better…Really want that Rambo and Jack partnership to come to fruition..Just need Wenger to buy that powerful Dm…Elneny, Xhaxa and Coquelin are good guys, decent players but they are taking up the space of what should be a great player

PFo
PFo

Not just his goal, but Ozil’s general play was excellent. Probably worthy of higher than an 8. Let down by the general lethargy and braindeadness of his teammates in the second half.

Matt
Matt

We’re awful and Liverpool will tear us apart, unless the team puts a “spurs performance”. Can’t wait for this sorry manager to f… off here really

onenil
onenil

We are Not terrible. That said, we are pretending to be at Man City’s level and we are not. I suspect against Liverpool, (similar points so far, plenty of their own problems) we will end up drawing.
Bellerin and Xhaka cannot do the one touch, no look pass like an Ozil without giving the ball away. Alexis is wretchedly out of form for a player of his standard and should not be trying to playmake from deep but pushed right into their box where his chaotic high tempo approach can wreck the opposition defence and not our passing game.

Espen
Espen

Surely clearly it is time to drop Xhaka to the bench.

Oli
Oli

Giroud actually did a nice lay-off to Wilshere who should have scored, didn’t he?

Stephen
Stephen

Three goals in the last four games. Each game we had approx. 75% possession. Our front tactics are not working. We looked most dangerous when a player broke with precedent and took a run at defenders. Passing in and around the box continually simply doesn’t work for us. Our counter attacks are always slowed down as the forwards wait for the midfield to catch up – to have someone to pass to instead of taking a killer instinct shot (Welbeck doing this against Southampton made me want to break my tv). We’re so easy to defend against because we simply pass instead of ever dribble. So defenses can organize and are never broken out of shape.

Alex
Alex

Fantastic movement and anticipation from Özil for that goal as well. He makes a guess about where it might pop out and gets over into that space. Super super super.

Badaab
Badaab

Positives of today:
Ainsley Maitland-Niles really looks at home in the side, even if he’s played out of position at LB. Sure, it was against Newcastle, but he was MOTM for me against West Ham in midweek. He’s quick, makes runs beyond the defense, and wants to play football. One of the few players on our side looking to run beyond the opposition defense.
Ozil was sharp again today. His moment of brilliance saved us from another Groundhog Day level performance of everyone standing on the edge of the opposition box in a line (like at Southampton and at West Ham). He also provided the outlet when we were moving out of defense.
Jack looked like he wanted to play as well. He was looking for interplay, and ran at the defense when in possession. Got crowded out too often, though, but when you’re staring at a wall of defensive players and your own team are stood static, it was at least something.
Negatives of today:
Xhaka needs some bench time. He’s become entirely too careless in possession, and he seems to not to be interested in tracking back as often as he should. His work ethic is really exposed when played alongside someone who isn’t Aaron Ramsey, who’s so busy and buzzing about Xhaka’s casual nature isn’t noticed.
Bellerin got better as the game went on, but he had a lackluster performance as well.
This will be a little controversial, but I think Alexis needs some time off the pitch as well. He seems like he’s trying to do it all himself instead of playing in the team. The later stages of the game were better from him, but really, he needs to pass more, stop coming inside onto his right foot as much, and make runs behind the defense. He loses possession often when dribbling into that crowded area on the edge of the box, and leaves out LB position exposed. If Newcastle had a competent attack down the flank, he’d have left AMN exposed often.
Going forward:
For midweek I know we’ll see some changes with it being the league cup and all, but I hope that Wenger doesn’t just deploy the kids. Elneny deserves a start in midfield, IMO, because while he’s not as forward thinking with long passes, he’s always available to receive the ball and keep things moving. I also hope that Mustafi and Kolasinac are available, because West Ham will be putting out a full strength team against us (likely including Andy Carroll) to get their season some momentum.

TomNelsonAFC
TomNelsonAFC

Agree with the exception of elneny i think he is a quality sub when you are winning calms play down makes good passes but he does not other enough in attack.

Gordy
Gordy

It would be nice to see Maitland Niles in his right position. Did anyone else encounter some very unpleasant Newcastle fans on the way back in the tube? One prat insisted on banging his fist on the ceiling while singing about his love for Tottenham. An older female Toon supporter told him to shut up.

Zilhad
Zilhad

Absolute discrace!
Someone publicly declared their love for totenham?

George H
George H

Wilshere was outstanding today for me, first thought is always a drive or pass forward, offers something no one else in our team does. If we could rely on him staying fit he’s a readymade Ozil replacement imo

Walcott\'s+left+footed+curl
Walcott\'s+left+footed+curl

Been saying it since he signed, but Xhaka just isn’t a good player. I thought I was a bit premature in my judgement, but I’m beginning to think I’m not. He’s slow, so he can’t pick up a run in behind, doesn’t cope with pressing which is why he’s responible for so many error that leads to goal scoring oppurtunities, he can’t control the tempo of a game, he more or less is static in his play, he makes rash challenges that lead to yellow and red cards when there’s no excuse for them, he lacks a right foot, making him that an extra few touches everytime he’s on the ball, he’s not defensively aware, so he neither covers space, the opposition’s passing or makes self sacrificing runs to cover crosses/passes, he’s lazy and sloppy which leads to us losing the ball and the opposition to become dangerous. He can cross a ball 60 yards and a cracking shot. But that’s not what we need. He didn’t suit us in a 4-2-3-1 and he doesn’t suit us in a 3-4-3. He just doesn’t suit our style of playing. He should be dropped and a replacement should be signed.

Elcamino
Elcamino

Id start.niles either for xhaka or for bellerin. Alexis was terrible. Bellerin really pisses me off. He blows so many chances. Off day for Lacazette as well. Wilshire should have taken his chance.