West Ham 1 Arsenal 3: Post-Match Thoughts and Player Ratings
Posted by enigma106
After a bad run of form that saw the Gunners pick up two points from a possible nine, they headed to Upton Park to take on Sam Allardyce and his West Ham team that’s renowned for their doggedness and eccentric style of play. Arsene Wenger recalled Santi Cazorla into the fold in place of Tomas Rosicky and Thomas Vermaelen retained his place in the heart of the defense alongside Per Mertesacker.
Listed below are the Gooner Daily ratings for Arsenal’s triumphant heroes at the Boleyn Ground:
Wojciech Szczesny: He was relatively untroubled throughout the game and dominated his area as you’d expect but West Ham’s only goal came when he failed to deal with a simple shot from Kevin Nolan and he parried it straight to Carlton Cole that duly punished him. The individual errors keep coming. 6/10
Bacary Sagna: The French workhorse marauded the right flank and supplied some inch-perfect crosses for his attackers. 7/10
Kieran Gibbs: This lad continues to improve with each passing game and he did well to balance offensive and defensive play. 7/10
Thomas Vermaelen: The Belgian had a very good game against Chelsea and retained his place yesterday. He kept his game really simple and did the right things in defense. Good to see him back on the act after some time out warming the bench. 7/10
Per Mertesacker: The BFG worked well with his defensive partner and shut out the attacks West Ham posed through the middle. He also used his height to great effect as he won a couple of lofted balls from the midfield. 7/10
Mikel Arteta: Arsenal’s unsung hero domineered his midfield and dictated the tempo well for his side. His influence on this team is unrivaled. He also had a shot that almost crept in. 7/10
Aaron Ramsey: The Welsh Dragon had a birthday to forget as he was a bit sloppy at times but his woes were compounded when he suffered a thigh strain that could sideline him for a while. 6/10
Santi Cazorla: The Spanish magician had been in and out of the team this season. His form has also been hot and cold but we saw the Santi Cazorla of old yesterday as he connected well with his teammates and stamped his authority on the game. Arsene Wenger’s plot to bring Lukas Podolski to the left saw Cazorla move to the middle. A move worth its weight in gold. 8/10
Mesut Ozil: The German schemer was ubiquitous in midfield but he wasn’t that influential as he would have liked. Almost created an assist for Olivier Giroud but they weren’t in the same wavelength. 6/10
Theo Walcott: Just when it seemed like it was going to be one of those nights where things weren’t going according to plan for the Gunners, Theo Walcott steps up the plate with two quickfire goals in the space of just three minutes to swing the game’s pendulum to Arsenal’s favor. 10/10 #shikenah
Olivier Giroud: He looked like a player bereft of confidence and when he skewed his shot wide, it was glaring to see the frustration in his expressions. However, his team tried really hard to create chance after chance for him but he always missed the opportunity for a tap in. Got an assist for the game’s clincher though. 6/10
Lukas Podolski: It took an unfortunate Aaron Ramsey injury to make the manager realize that he needed to make a change to influence the game positively and he got it in Lukas Podolski. After a long while out, the German machine came onto the pitch to create an assist and score the goal that put the game beyond doubt. Efficient as always. 9/10
Mathieu Flamini and Nicklas Bendtner didn’t play long enough to get player ratings.
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