Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Nottingham Forest 0-4 Arsenal – player ratings

Arsene Wenger made 11 changes from the team that scored four goals away from home at Hull last weekend, and got another four goals away from home as we beat Nottingham Forest 4-0 in the EFL Cup.

Here’s how the players rated.


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Alexis Sanchez' CD collection

I like the Coquelin and Cazorla partnership… But I also really, really like this Xhaka and Elneny partnership from what we’ve seen (taking opposition and games played in to account and everything too). What a great problem to have. Also thought Akpom looked a completely different animal on the left wing than when he’s played up top for the senior side.


Love the way Elneny and Xhaka basically take only one touch. Really speeds up the movement of the ball and makes everyone around them look good.

Alexis Sanchez' CD collection

I love how Elneny basically just passes and moves in to space for the whole 90 minutes, and with purpose as well. I know there’s flashier players, but it’s really satisfying watching Elneny play.


It’s not gonna happen, but would love to see those two start against Chelsea and against bigger teams. Notice I don’t classify Chelsea as big 😉


Impressed by how strong Perez looks on the ball. For his second goal, he rode the bump and was first to recover it. Means a lot for a striker. Does he ever use his right foot?


He’s got a right foot?!

Timorous Me

Right foot? Overrated. Just ask Daniel Day-Lewis.


Thank god for Ox we scored our first goal. He looked finished before then but once the goal settled him down he reminded us what he can actually bring to a game


I’m so desperate for The Ox to fulfil his full potential. When he’s good he’s fecking great, Chelsea in the Community Shield and pre-season immediately spring to mind. He’s so strong on the ball, has the pace to fly past opposition, the skill and deft touches to go with it and more often than not, the neat finish. However… His passing and final ball leave an awful lot to be desired though. Then when such instances don’t come off for him he’s immediately affected by it. His head drops and the positivity seems to drain from him with each failed… Read more »


My concern with Ox is he gets it done with no pressure (pre-season, junk time with games already won) but not when it counts.

Lloyd Townsend

What about beating three players on the dribble while we were down against Liverpool in a time of dire need?


I expect you could argue in that instance – devil’s advocate-style – that that was the kind of situation where the match was all but lost and we had nothing to lose. After all, he came up with that crucial goal to put us back in it against Monaco before giving the ball away to throw it all away again. Either way, the charge that he has some mental issues with dealing with the pressure when it counts seems to have some merit…


That’s what I call formidable strenght in depth. What an awesome performance by the team with the most double-barrel names in history. The aggression, the speed and the directness impressed me the most. Ok, it was Forest, but it could have been a tricky one. Props to the Ox for scoring. He was a bit at his usual, but you cannot fault a player for at least trying hard, but also being affected by his poor form. His persistence paid off, which will hopefully give him some assurance of his own capabilities. He needs to get cracking. The kids’ application… Read more »


I have the same concerns. Ox gives the ball away far too easily when under no pressure too. He gave it away more than anyone last night. His decision making and confidence are haunting his footballing ability. Hopefully he can overcome these issues because he will be some player.

Cliff Bastin

ElXhaka partnership = good luck getting the ball, opponents


Xhaneni sounds good as well 😀


How about the Basel brothers. Or the Basel bash brothers.


Why not the Basel Brush Boys – foxy players


Grandhammed Xhakneny


Forget Shakademus… we got Xhakanenny!

Alexis Sanchez' CD collection



I really like a lot of these but “Granny” is my absolute favorite

Norwegian Gooner

I really think three in the middle with Francis, Mesut and Santi. The “Coqzilla” would be feared all throughout Europe!


I’m still hoping for good things from Oxlade-Chamberlain – haven’t quite given up on him yet. His final 20 minutes tonight showed some of the promise that has always been there. Hopefully that will give his confidence a bit of a boost and he can kick on from now. That goal was breath-taking, a thing of sweeping beauty.

Wenger in&out

I have said it before and it sounded stupid, I will keep saying it.
I think Oxblade-Chamberlain may do better as a striker.
He scores goals(sometimes)
He runs
He dribbles
He creates chances mostly inside the 18yrd box.
His passes meh
His midfield play is meh
His overall technical ability is meh.
Sounds like most strikers I know.


I’ve been thinking that myself. Get him out of the build-up and put him up front where he can basically play as a super-quick fox in the box.


Chu-Young Park has gotten more playing time for Arsenal since he left!


“He’ll shoot, he’ll score, he’ll eat your Labrador, Chu Yung Park, Chu Yung Park”


The funniest football chant I have ever heard.I remember it from a few years back by reading fans for Seol Kyi Heon.


Games like these – where the peripheral players and newcomers have a chance to shine – are really encouraging when they go well. And, damn, this one went well. Gives you a warm fuzzy feeling about the potential of many of these lads. [Yes, I know it was Nottingham Forest but still!] COYG!


We were a scratch team, but you would never know. Everyone played their part. The youngsters were really Arsenal – Great close control and link up play, and the older players added the steel (and the goals). Very encouraging.


We do like our left footers recently. Is there is a right side brain thing going on at Arsenal?
Perhaps Wenger deciding neurological personality traits the next source of advantage. The probability of having so many left footers in the squad is extremely low given it should be two or three from 7% of the population or doubly that to push for left sided players and I can think of about 11+. Was a time you couldn’t find a leftie except for Giggs.
Cech, Gibbs, Holding, Monreal, ,Carzola(? Who knows), Alexis, Granit, Giraud, Ozil, Perez, Jack…


Alexis is right footed.

Theo Slade

Alexis is right-footed!


Cazorla is naturally right-footed, yet he has a good left foot. Alexis? Quite sure he’s right-footed.


Errrm – Nigel, RVP, Podolski, Overmars, Edu, Gio (remember that screamer!)… we’ve always had great lefties?


I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, I think Elneny will be a surprise of the season.

It’s quite clear Xhaka has been bought with Ramsey in mind as a pair. However I think in time, Elneny will show himself to be a bit of an upgrade to Ramsey, as he provides all the strengths of Ramsey but better technically and more disciplined.

Elnaka will become the new Coqorla.


This. Elneny has played very well depsite not doing anything too flashy (except for the away goal at barca) and perhaps thats why he goes under the radar for a lot of people. Superb technically and speeds up our game in build up.

I think we’ll see both coqzorla and xhakneny/xhaksey being deployed throughout the season. Arsene will work in these pairs.


Agree. In particular, Elneny usually takes only one touch (because he knows what’s happening around him before he gets the ball). Ramsey just doesn’t do that. Elneny is really an athletic Busquets.


I see Ramsey’s best position as being an alternative or back-up No.10 for Ozil. A different type of No.10 (more driving directness than cute passes) I admit, but I’m sure he’d be an effective one.


I was thinking the same. We are better off using Ramsey in the final 3rd as we have more disciplined and better passers than him in the deeper positions now. Ramsey likes being on the ball but doesn’t really want to do the simple things. You can see he is always looking for the killer pass and it is often not there. He has a great engine, great at pressuring opponents, has an eye for goal, is great at finding goal scoring positions with the timing of his movement, and he links up well with Ozil and Alexis. Stick him… Read more »


Or in Spaghetti Western idiom:



Take The XhakEl’s of the Xhaka Elneny partnership more often in the future please Mr Wenger ! :O


Interested that Holding played on the left of the back pair. Is that his usual slot? Or is Arsene preparing him to cover for Koscielny?

Pigeon Superstition

The purpose was to fit Gabriel, who is more suited to play on the right. Out of the two, I guess Holding was more comfortable changing to the left of the central two.


Glad that three of the players that haven’t been given much of a chance this year really were able to shine (Perez, Xhaka and Elneny) to give Wenger something to think about in his selections coming up. Really liked what all three did. Each time I see Elneny I keep thinking what a deal we got with him, really a solid buy. Great option for Wenger to have either as a fill in starter or sub coming off of the bench, really like his game. I don’t know what more Xhaka needs to do to earn some starts. Enough of… Read more »


Wanted to share with you guys the lengths I went to, to watch this game live this morning (4:45am Sydney time for those of you playing at home). Got up, connected the computer to the TV because I assumed it would be streamed on Arsenal Player. Seemed like it was going to work – the boys walked on to the pitch and then boom, picture is replaced by the scoreboard and commentary only – guessing AP don’t have the rights. Furious googling ensued, finally finding that if I joined Bet365 and had money in the account I can watch a… Read more »


google reddit soccerstreams
very reliable


And very illegal


Good result. Good performance, but the real test is Chavski next week. If we lose that everyone will forget this result and slag Wenger off again. No doubt Costa will be an annoying twat as usual. COYG!


What a joy it would be to see Mustafi totally own Costa on the day… with a bit of afters from Xhaka to top it off – they both look like they have the steel to do it, without Gabriel’s temper!
Anything will do but please lord don’t let Costa doesn’t become the new Drogboodoo player for Chelski


The Ox plays well only when there is no pressure. If only he could get the mental aspect of the game fixed


People as per usual getting OVER carried away with Elneny and underrating Ox. Same people who would say Lucas was not a great addition but a ‘panic buy’, like Granit (early panic buy) or Mustafi (Never mind Sissoko) Elneny did OK. Ox did far better than many would rate or give him credit for. He’s a dynamic player that can dribble past two or three players, he holds the ball well (unlike say Walcott). Where he needs to improve is final ball. He’s rushing it a bit bc he’s too eager to impress. OTOH, you have to give him top… Read more »


I understand Ox can be hit and miss sometimes but you can’t deny he is a talent. He has everything in the locker but us terribly unlucky at times with most of his outrageous efforts coming off the bar. He is low on confidence but we shouldn’t forget his telling contributions for Arsenal. Remember that game against united away in FA cup where we are pretty much dismal and got our first goal through his slaloming run that left Valencia on his arse. God I enjoyed that.

Nigel Declan

Arsenal soundly beat Lord Bendtner’s side, didn’t break anybody, and gave some new players and those who aren’t always on the field with the senior squad a chance to strut their stuff. 10/10


Hmmm XhakEl, we finally have a kryptonian in midfield.

Arteta's love-child

That’s blogs’ article


In the long term lucas will be a better asset than the opportunistic vardy.


I want Xakha with Santi in midfield in the PL. He can defend but adds a lot of class on top which Coq doesn t.


There was a passage of play in the second half when the Oles! started to ring out, and after maybe 30 passes the Nottingham defence was carved open and Perez was clean through in goal. I wish he’d scored that, but he fluffed his shot. Either way the move was a thing of class and something I’ve missed seeing us for ages now. And yes I know it was only Nottingham but still; goosebumps!


Holding cost peanuts, yet he looks as good as £50 million John Stones. Delighted we got him ahead of Sp*rs.


I’m still sticking with Coquelin and Santi for the Chelsea game, Xhaka was superb, so was Neny, but I just feel we need Francis’ hard tackling against Fabregas who’s been hitting top form recently

The Ghost of Peter Storey

Is it just me, or has anyone else noticed that Coq tends to be a fraction of a second late in his tackles ending up with needless yellow cards. Of course it’s part of the job, but I always worry that against the top sides, and Chelsea, he’s a red card waiting to happen.

Pete the Gooner

The key to us winning anything this season will be solved from the midfield. This extremely healthy competition between the 7 midfielders we have is going to bring out the best in them and that fighting spirit has definitely infected the rest of the squad. I just hope Wenger has the balls to drop anyone not performing well even if it’s Ozil or Alexis. I really wouldn’t mind playing El xhaka with SantI as our cam I’m sure many of you miss those beautiful unpredictable shots from outside the box like I am. I can see it now goal after… Read more »


You are killing OCD persons like me with the Chu-Young Park-substitute pics, blog. Please add all our current players to the system!


It’s not illegal to watch live streams, just to be the host. So nothing illegal being done if you watch a stream!

Great result and good to score 4 again. I’m starting to get a good feeling about this season

Same old Oli

Open question: How do people see Ramsey fitting into this team? Personally i love cazorla, but last night (all be it against forest) i think our midfield looked awesome. Fluid passing and movement, Xhaka was great, but elnenny looks so good for what we paid.


I see Ramsey playing 2nd fiddle to Ozil and it’d probably suit his as well, as he likes going forward and we may get a few more goals from him than Ozil & keep Ozil fresh for bigger games (for the entire season actually). Also I feel Wenger is playing a few players out of their preferred/talent zone like Coq playing further in front, Theo & AOC playing against teams that defend more, Sanchez up front etc. Some of it is paying better like Santi moved to a more defensive role but having someone like Theo playing when the opposition… Read more »


I see Ramsey sitting centrally on the bench, forming excellent partnerships with the Ox on the right and Gibbs sitting just behind on the left. Seriously, I think this is Ramsey’s last year at the club. The team’s moved on from 3 years ago and there are much better players ahead of him in central midfield now, unfortunately his image of himself doesn’t match the reality. Hopefully we can cash in while he still has this inflated reputation based on a few decent games for Wales. I expect to see him and Wilshere gone after this year, either filling the… Read more »

Same old Oli

That was what i was thinking, but will he be happy with playing second fiddle? We already know he wasnt too happy when he was out on the wing. I just hope he can get back to the level he was at a few years a go but wenger definitely is spoilt for choice!

Das pauly bear

I think we need to see more of gibbs. He is a much stronger lb than nacho. I think nacho let’s way too many crosses into our box. Gibbs fights so hard for every ball. Injury free I think he is the better player.

Ps I still love you nacho. But at very least this spot needs to be shared


Let me hope Perez has opened the page of goals at Emirates, I can’t forget u Xhaka with your long range stunning kicks


i think I love Chuba, he just looks so determined to seize his chances and he looked a handful last night.

Wenger's Smirk

“Card for his birthday” made me chuckle. Excellent, Blogs!


The only real question to me that matters about the Ox’s performance is whether it was good enough to get him back in the starting XI ahead of Iwobi. While Iwobi’s negligent defending is a major concern, I think the clear answer to the question is no. Despite the goal and improved 2nd half, to me he just did not show enough to force his way back into the team. He’ll get more chances this season for sure, but he’s going to need to show increased application and desire when he does get those chances to leave Wenger no choice… Read more »


Loved the commentator insisiting on calling him Oxlade Alex-Chamberlain throughout the game last night, from the first minute to the last, including the raised voice celebration OXLAAAAADEEE ALEX-CHAMBERLAIN!!!!! when he scored.

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