Arsenal 2-0 Sp*rs – player ratings


‘Power shift’, they said.

‘Sp*rs are gonna hammer Arsenal,’ they said.

Ah well, how sad for them it didn’t work out as the Gunners ran out 2-0 winners and thoroughly deserved the three points. Here’s how the players rated.

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Jimbo Jones


Arsene\'s zip

10s all round.
You get a ten, you get a ten… Everyone gets a ten.


I’d like to give a ten to all the spuds in the pub where I watched the game who went from cheers to “oh no, oh for fucks sake, come in ref, oh for fucks sake”. Them boys made the experience all the sweeter.

Jimbo Jones

COYG! More of that please!


Unbelievable performance. Only time I was worried was when Coq came on for Laca. But it worked.


I just don’t understand fans booing for the decision. It was a rational move by AW to bring on another midfielder to lock the door completely. Özil was having the best game since forever, Sanchez looked today like he will score again anytime. Taking off Lacazette was the right decision and fans booing for that is completely ridiculous. He is not untouchable and has no divine right to complete 90 minutes, especially when we are 2-0 up in the freaking North London Derby! It’s a team game and today we provided one of the best team performances since City away… Read more »


I agree with everything you said. Just thought, at the time, it made our formation too out of whack.


Formations are theoretical anyway; the sub was about being practical & holding on to our lead.


Formation was the same. Ramsey moved to play in the top three. Just the personnel was more defence minded after the substitution.


It has a lot to do with who we had to bring on to try to shore things up. Coq had a good six month period, but otherwise he’s just not been good enough. If we had someone who really is a good DM to bring on in that situation people wouldn’t be booing. We don’t have a good DM in the team and haven’t had one for…well…yeah, forever.


Haha Ref don’t let them sucker you into explaining obvious stuff like why the Emirates crowd was disappointed our Big Three didn’t get the full 90 minutes.

For 70 mins at least, that was one hell of a show.

Trixie Popsicle2

We’ve not had a good DM forever? Do you watch the Arsenal? I seriously despair of our support sometimes.

Billy Dyer

LOL. He might be young supporter. Might not have had the pleasure to watch Romford Pelle, Viera, Petit, Gilberto etc

Non Flying dutchman

You don’t boo a substitution anyway. What does that do for the player coming on!?!

Coq came on and gave a solid performance including one particularly decent tackle breaking up a dangerous spuds attack whilst there was still time for them to come back in the game.

It was certainly by no means all of us, but I think it reflected quite badly on the Emirates crowd, and made us look quite daft in the end


I don’t think it was that bad or made us look stupid.. We were creating a lot of chances, people wanted to see us win by 3 or 4 goals. Wanting to humiliate your neighbour is part of being a supporter i guess 😉 So i’d say it’s ok for the fans to want to really go for it and smash the spuds and to be disappointed when we made a more defensive move, but of course the manager had to be more realistic and play it smart..


The reason was that we were in the ascendancy at the time and really going for it. Taking Lacazette off felt like we were signalling the end of any attacking intent. The biggest fear was that we would invite them on to us, camp in our box and end up conceding in the most Arsenal of manners. There was also the fear that Xhaka would pick up a second yellow at any time – Coquelin for Xhaka may have been an option…

Anyway, it worked out fine, but we all felt it was a strange decision at the time.


Great points.


I agree. It seemed to invite Spuds onto attack, although their substitutions helped prevent that. For a while we had no out ball and I felt we could break quicker and in more deadly fashion if we kept Laca on.

Great atmosphere in the ground today and certainly not The Library that Spud fans were trumpeting.


Lacazette was spent.

We don’t have Welbeck or giroud as options.

The midfield around Granit (on a yellow) needed additional energy.

Made sense to reinforce midfield, push Ramsey slightly higher.

As it was, was impressed Rambo kept discipline and helped Bellerin cover right side of defense.

Billy Dyer

Welbeck was on the bench, but I doubt he would have been, if it wasn’t for Theo falling ill


Threat is the key for me, it is a removal of threat which allows the opposition to change their defensive setup to free up a more offensive midfield or whatever. The key is how good is the guy you bring on !! I remember in the old days when Feo used to be quite good and AW would take him off and put Flamini or somesuch on with 19mins 10secs to go and suddenly the opposition left back would start playing like a Brazilian winger and we became pinned back and often let a goal in. Removal of threat changes… Read more »


I think Lacazette’s legs had gone. There was one instance where he could have controlled a deflected shot from just on the goal line at the edge of the keeper’s box but he left it go out for a corner. A finisher like him had he had the legs he would have controlled it, created an angle and had a shot on goal

Billy Dyer

Agreed. I wanted Wenger to take Xhaka off. He overly committed himself several times (nothing wrong with that when the match is refereed by Collina- like, but we had Mike Dean!).
I felt that Xhaka was walking a bit on a tight rope


I think it’s easy to see at this point that Xhaka’s tackling is, in a word, shit. He can really pass a ball, but he over-commits with such regularity and such poor quality that I was afraid of a sending off from the moment he went in the book. Credit to him, though, because when he got carded my first thought was “you better not make a single tackle for the rest of the match” and that’s exactly what he did.

Arsenal fan since 04

I agree that it felt like an odd substitution, but Coq played well. Welbs may have excelled in this game and I was hoping to see him put on to go for the 3rd goal, but perhaps he is not quite ready.


He should have swapped Coq for Xhaka.
Mikey Dean was ready to give X a red card and invite them back in. At last the ref didn’t give Kane a pen for that dive. Mustafi was superb with Kos. Loved it.


A lot of it was also down to the fact that it was Lacazette. The player that Wenger keeps bringing off and the player who keeps getting dropped for the biggest matches and the player who really showed today why he should start the big matches.
I dont think the fans would have booed Ozil or Sanchez being substituted in the same way. This was more like “Fuck, not this agan”


Yep. That was my feeling too


You know, the whole ‘it’s because it’s Lacazette’ – that’s exactly the problem. It’s a narrative. It doesn’t matter if it’s the right thing to do for game management. The narrative is there and regardless of whether or not Wenger is right (he was) the baying mob is looking for an opportunity to get the tiki torches out.

But I have to say, otherwise the crowd did well to reward the team for a committed performance.

Both should continue to do both.


I think it’s a smart choice too take off a 5ft6 player at the end of the game, tactically it’s smart to do when you are winning and have no needn’t for more goals.


The answer to the lacazette 75 minutes thing is he’s had a pretty injury filled career I think. He’s is superb though, he’ll score a bunch over the next couple of years we keep players around him. Also yes coquelan not the worst sub I’ve ever seen.


There’s only one Arsene Wenger. And he was spot on again!



Another Paul

To be honest I didn’t dare to expect a clean sheet win for today – more of that please!


Power shift they said.
Shit is all they go back with to their miserable homes.


We learnt that in plumbing 101. Shit runs down the hill.

No power shift


Tell the media.

This is the same team they were lauding about that beat Madrid.

Tommy Gunner

Centre backs were fantastic

Jimbo jones

Kos you kind of expect it from but Mustafi was fantastic today. Good discipline and positioning no silly lapses.

A Different George

I thought both Mustafi and Koscielny looked nervous for around the first three minutes (seriously) and then both were great for the rest of the game. And if you heard Mustafi’s post-match interview, he is pretty clearly a guy who can be a leader on the pitch.


Mustafi is a fighter.


@George, but did his mother trust him with the key over his older brother?


Seems Ramsey has gone under the radar a little but I’d have him up there as potential motm as well. Great performances top to bottom, perhaps all this pundit talk of spurs overtaking us has lit a little fire in some of them..

Stringer Bell





I was at the game, and yes Ramsey slipped through a couple of nice balls, but for the most part he was off the pace. Slowed down attacks, ridiculous decision making, he was like a headless chicken out there. Definitely need an upgrade

Stringer Bell

I was there too Sean, a couple of good passes but overall he was terrible. Summed up at 2 0 with a couple of mins to half time and he tried a a flick and lost the ball. Thankfully Kane shit wide. If we are to challenge for league in next few years we desperately need a better player.

Third Plebeian

“Thankfully Kane shit wide.”



I was also there, and I thought he was excellent. He was everywhere, covering defence and linking the attack, making late runs into the box etc. The main reason we won the game was our dominance in midfield, in no small part down to Ramsey’s performance, especially in the first half.

He could score a hat trick and make a goal line clearance, and Stringer would still claim he was ineffective…


Rambo was excellent.

I was worried when they brought Coquelin up and pushed him foreward but he stayed discipline and covered Bellerin.


Try something else Idris Alba, all you ever do is post hate on Ramsey. Pathetic.

Stringer Bell

True dat


Sad to see the Ramsey haters club can’t even appreciate him when he has a great game. Disciplined and effective.

Frank Bascombe

He didn’t have ‘great’ game. I’m not mad about Ramsey but I don’t hate him. He’s not a very good player. Odd how he polarizes opinion really.


Even though we had a near-perfect team performance today. Spurs were still dangerous though and Ramsey gave them encouragement with some loose play when he should have been playing it simple but thankfully it didn’t cost us.

That being said, I thought he made fewer mad forward runs than normal and that greatly helped our overall balance. It was similar to the 0-0 at the Bridge when we our shape was perfect. If he can play that same disciplined role home and away against every team we face, we’ll finish top four (Narrator: He won’t).


Baffling reaction from some people on here. He did have a great game overall, certainly he had a better game than their CMs. Haters will point to a couple of loose passes and act like he shit the bed. SMH

Always Arsenal

Give me Ramsey over Ali any day !


No chance of challenging for the league with a limited player like Ramsey technically piss poor, shame about Santi’s injury sorely missed

Kartik Iyer

I thought all the headless chickens were playing in white 🙂


Not at all. Hate to be negative after a derby win but apart from that lovely through ball to Hector, he lost so many balls but maybe he had an injury because he seemed to be trotting back all the time instead of chasing.

But him and Alexis have to put their differences aside.
He clearly ignored passing to the Chilean on a free kick in the first half. That looked deliberate


It did but to be fair to the lad he found Alexis several times after that. I was annoyed by the non pass and was watching out for it.


Maybe thats because the chilean is a twat!

Billy Dyer

You’re not wrong labelling Alexis, but today, I thought he really had his best game in Arsenal shirt for a very very long time. Before the game I was dreading the fact that AW would start with Alexis & Ozil, but I was so happy to be proven wrong. Both of them worked their socks off. I loved that moment in the end of the game. Sanchez was chasing the ball but the ball was way too fast for his tired legs. In frustration he just dived on the grass. I didn’t think he had it left in him for… Read more »

DB\'s first touch

i initially thought that as well but on looking at the replay i think that by the time Ramsay spotted him as he was getting ready to take the free kick, he realized that Alexis was just about offside and held off passing to him. So I don’t think he deliberately ignored Alexis, he just didn’t spot him on time (and that is still on him, but it’s a different error than willfully ignoring a teammate making a great run).

Yankee Gooner

Ramsey also made several runs that weren’t picked out but you might not have noticed because he didn’t flail like a gaffed fish after them.


Surprised by the down likes, thought Ramsey did very well today. Midfield has been our biggest weakness today but he was disciplined and linked the attack so well the Spurs players couldn’t get near him. Spurs couldn’t handle his movement at all, was always available on the ball and made very important challenges. He’s not Santi Cazorla but he bossed it today all the same, agree he could be in with a decent shout for MotM


Ignore the downvotes from the Ramsey hate cabal. They wish this was The Guardian’s comment section. I swear a few of them only chime in to troll Arsenal.

Billy Dyer

LOL mate


That’s set the mood for a great weekend now!
Well done boys. COYG!


This was a fantastic performance. The only part I don’t understand – when we lose it’s all about the manager. When we win, there’s no credit given to Arsene. Nothing mentioned about motivation and big game performance when it actually happens. Why?


Most say things only as it fits their agenda.

A man hears what he wants to hear
And disregards the rest
Nah na nah nah
Nah un na na, nah un nah


You deluded fool! The rule of thumb is:

If we lose, it’s Venga’s fault.
If we win, we do so despite of Venga.



Wenger can’t motivate them to play like today on a regular basis anymore. Yes, he motivated them today, we’re all happy, but what about the games we’ve lost? And it’s the same every season for the last decade, and we all still get super excited for one great win…


Consistency is the key issue. We have it to beat anyone on the day.

But we tend to drop our level and not replicate the performance thereafter. We need to follow big wins with routine ones against lesser teams and not drop our effort. It has to be consistent to win the league which is what differentiates City from us currently.

canon fodder

…do you not think that highly paid professionals should not be self-motivated? I don’t work hard because my boss is standing over me; I work hard because I know what is expected of me within my sphere of expertise. Children need to be motivated to do their homework; this rule should not apply to professional adults


Of course if it was that simple then we could do away with managers altogether. The players are probably self motivated in terms of their own game, but that doesn’t mean they’ll pull together as a team or fight for each other or even buy into the tactics. That’s where managers come in, making their teams more (or less) than the sum of their parts. And the great ones get their teams playing to at least a high level consistently.

Jimbo jones

Ah but it does in almost every walk of life. One of a manager’s primary functions in most industries is to motivate. You may know what is expected of you, but with the right environment, motivation and support you’ll be able to do it significantly better.

Trixie Popsicle

Thanks Matt. After 40 years of Arsenal support you just made me decide to walk way from online foitball fan comments. What an absolute bollix comment from you.

Frank Bascombe

Nice one Trixie. It was a particularly muggy comment.


Of course he won’t see this now …

The gulf between the top 6 is so marginal. It has to be otherwise the same team would win every year. Having said that, if Wenger can’t motivate and still make top five for twenty years against teams who are much much better funded, then I would like to understand your definition of motivate. To me motivation is to to enable a team to over perform. If you count Arsenal’s points vs.other top six over the last ‘ failed’ ten years, and compare the cost of those pints to dollars invested in players, then I believe you will understand Arsene… Read more »


Great point. I also thought his subbing of Özil was a very smart move. I feel he’d like to keep him but that he’s not too bothered about Sanchez staying.


Winning against Sp*rs – that ten out of ten all round.


Great defensive performance. Two key differences for me.

Ramsey being disciplined and being selective in the runs he makes.
Alexis taking better care of the ball.

More of that and maybe Ozil and Alexis might want to stay on.


Playing with 2 proper CB´s is always a good thing. Mustafi could become very good indeed. Remember that Spuds won Real Madrid couple of weeks ago


Some people were all too eager to get rid of Mustafi.

They forget how many red cards, penalties conceded and own goals Koscielny had in his first season.

By that measure, Mustafi went straight into the season in a baptism of fire and I felt had generally a good season in a flawed team.

He is Koscielny’s replacement.

We still lack a bit of height at the back and we will need to bring in someone who can replicate that which Per gave us (may be not to the same extent of course)

Billy Dyer

[email protected] might have won at Real Madrid but they’re still




Thank you C B. Great article which gives great insight into a player who I believe us often unfairly maligned.


He walked the tight rope today. Clearly he isn’t the best tackler out there but so indispensable for us in terms of giving us a quick ball from the back.

Stayed discipline today after the yellow. I was a bit worried he may see a red but he kept his wits today.

One thing for sure, Granit is a fighter, he won’t shirk from his duties.

Billy Dyer

I think he describes himself perfectly in that interview. He ain’t a DM, he’s a fake Nr10.
We keep slaughtering him for his deficiencies on that role. It is not his fault that AW has taken an oath to play every player (bar keeper) not in their natural positions


Mustafi was sublime today, my pick for motm

David C

we decided to give it to Ozil to make sure he does the same thing every game!!!

Agent Mustafi needs no motivation. Mustafi stayed on his feet most of the game too, which was great to see.


Mustafi. He was fantastic.

Billy Dyer

Struggling to understand the thumbs down for this post?!


Feels like we get one of these a season doesn’t it? Chelsea last time, United before. If only Wenger could capture performances like this in a bottle!


If we could bottle this and not just bottle it that would be great.
I’ll get me coat.

Billy Dyer

You’re wearing it inside out


Winning against cunts in that sort of style is 10/10 for everyone in my book.


Ozil and alexis really showed their world class today, cant afford to lose them ! The game just shows that arsenal , player for player, is a better team. Need to play the rest of the games with todays intensity and passion. Coyg

Giroud\'s scorpion kick

Square root of fuck. Haha


No more park chu yong?!


Not when our first choice 11 are on pitch woohoo

Merlin\'s Panini

Superb performance. We haven’t looked that solid all season and it’s so much sweeter that it was the derby. Great team effort and good decision making by Wenger. Credit where it is due. Just would like to see it every game.
That will have done a world of good but they mustn’t get complacent. We are still only in 6th after all.
Makes things interesting again for now though.


I just really, really, really love Lacazette.


Aaron wore the wrong boots? He kept slipping.

A Different George

He actually changed boots during the game while Spurs were making a substitution.

Jiri Traktor

I also noticed that he is constantly slipping like last three, four games. Maybe he should change the boots completely.

Oh and I almost forgot: spurs are shite


Hahahaa…balance of power my hole!! Pick a combined 11 now!! Awesome stuff…We were better on every inch of that pitch today! Get in!!!!

Yankee Gooner

“Power my hole”


Mustafi was outstanding and my choice for man of the match. It was nice to see Ozil tracking back and Wenger prowling the touch line backing instructions. I hope we can go on a run from hereon

Jean Ralphio

Our performance was very good , but we can do better going forward. Lacazette not completing 90 minutes is ok, he is going to need to maintain and improve his fitness with there being no winter break.


Get in! Proper football is back!

This is our best 11 and I think it might be the first time we’ve been able to play it all season (I may be proved wrong in that, but it feels like it). With it we’re a match for anyone.

Just a shame Citeh are a so far ahead already. Time to go on a 10 game winning run I think. Like we used to.


Does this mean we can officially say Ozil shows up in big games and Robbie Savage and Piss Sutton can fuck the fuck off?

Billy Dyer

A) I love your name (I miss T. R 7)
B) you’re so right about twat Savage & see you next Tuesday Sutton


Mustafi MOTM by a mile. Was worried about him being ready for such a big game. But he made up for lost time. People tend to have their favorites (untouchables) and their scape goats. Mustafi was one of the latter, criticised for being worse than he was. Short memories praise koscielny forgetting that Mustafi has had a far better first season than the Frenchman with less red cards, own goals and penalties conceded. And yet I’m struggling to understand how we were so prepared to let him go having just sold the recently improving and maturing Gabriel, instead hoping to… Read more »

Billy Dyer

And to top that comparison of Mustafi & Koscielny, Shkodran is by far a better leader than Koscielny. Never seen Koscielny organise the defence

La Cassette

Dele Alli is a c*nt

Billy Dyer

Not just a plain one…
A cheating diving Kante.


Özil can only perform against small teams!

Matt P

Spurs are the ‘Great Pretender’
Cue Freddie Mercury.

Paul Smith

Lacazette’s movement was excellent, he really cussed them problems running the channels. Bellerin had a good game down the right and was always an option. The effort and commitment from all was outstanding…if they put that much in every week then we’ll climb the table very quickly….not sure how we finished with 4 times as many yellow cards as they did though!?!?

Michael Bolton Wanderers

What a day ?


Bonus rating: Arseblog using the expression “Square root of f*ck all”: Square root of 100 / 10

Indian gooner

Though I loved every second of the game, I just felt that our attacking was a bit lacking when lacazette was taken off. If it were upto me, I would have gotten iwobi and wilshere to go for the jugular since those cretins seemed lost. But that’s because I play video games and I am drunk merry. Glad we have a sensible manager like AW instead of an idiot like me. 🙂

Fill moon

All the players must get 10 out of 10


For this splendid win over the Spuds everyone gets a 10!


Great performance across the field but Ozil and Mustafi were immense. COYG!


Two words: Shkodran Mustafi

Billy Dyer

I can’t vote mate.


Alexis wasted some good chances but didnt give the ball away cheaply. I think alexis,ozil and sanchez give enough threat going forward so id rather see ramsey be more disciplined.

We usually get done on the break so by not giving it away and staying more dsciplined we minimize that danger


Can some one tell me why there is no mention of this win on the BBC sport page? For almost 6 months now I have wondered if the director General is a Spurs fan.
Same when giroud won the puskas award….not a thing.
Loved seeing a pub full of spurs fans standing quiet as I cheered and danced. I made no friends yesterday and fucking loved it. COYG