Arsenal 3-3 Liverpool – player ratings

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Arsenal looked like they were going to get battered, then looked like they might pull off an incredible win, but ultimately let Liverpool score another equaliser because that’s what we do when we play them.

We had 4’40 of decent football, but the rest was rubbish really. Here’s how the players rated tonight in the 3-3 draw with Liverpool.

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Anony
Anony

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I’m going to repeat this. I watch Arsenal with my heart clenched in my fists. I would give anything for Arsenal. When I see an Arsenal player fail to show that same level of committment, I instantly despise them. I can’t help this. Unfortunately for my health, Arsenal just means that much for me.

I absolutely despise Alexis Sanchez. I understand why he feels delusioned at the club and has given up but at the end of the day I’m an Arsenal fan not a Sanchez fan. Anything he does wrong is magnified on a massive scale for me. He did well to get us back into it but every attack broke down when he got the ball and he fucked us for Liverpool’s third goal. It literally makes no sense for him to be on the pitch any more. I don’t know what he needs to do to get dropped. He would have to literally try and score against us to be any worse.

I don’t know what a Granit Xhaka is. I don’t think he knows either. Play Maitland-Niles in midfield and bring Kolasinac back. I don’t care if we lose, I just can’t see that turd of a player mucking about in midfield anymore. Easily one of the worst transfers we have made in the last 7 years. Jack Wilshere gets a 9.5 for me. He did all the dirty work in midfield. He matched Salah and Mane for pace on many occasions and besides Ainsley was the only player who battled out there.

This meme about Bellerin’s hair needs to stop. The problem is Wenger and the coaching staff. If you get a 19-year-old player who immediately slots into the side and is arguably top 3 in his position in the world in his debut season but somehow ends up being shit in 3 years you deserve to lose your job.

The Alex Iwobi experiment needs to stop. He was never rated highly as a youth player and a lucky streak early on has somehow turned him into a first team player. Alex Iwobi knows he is inferior, he is embarassed when he gets the ball. Just get rid off him.

I was one of those dumb kids who used to call him Bosscielny. He is finished. There is no such thing as an Arsenal Captain curse. The moment any of these fragile players are given extra responsibility they lose their bottle. It’s not a coincedence. Koscielny looks broken mentally. Aaron Ramsey was right.

It really has reached the point that the only Arsenal players that I am desperate to keep are Lacazette, Ozil, Wilshere, Maitland-Niles and Kolasinac. I don’t think most fans would disagree with this.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

I feel bad for Iwobi as I really like him, but always been a bit miffed at the hype or him making. He never looked the one most likely at academy level.

I suspect it’s because he’s such a Wenger player. He’s a quintessential Wenger midfielder; pass and move, jack of all trades master of none, can play in almost any midfield or forward position but not excel. Doesn’t shoot unless its a very high chance in the box, etc.

Bill
Bill

I think 8-9 times out of ten his first touch is incredible, he is just not decisive enough after that with either his running passing or jack of all tradeyness

Sqbe
Sqbe

Agreed with Xhaka and Sanchez. Both should be dropped. Show balls, Wenger. If you have any.

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

Agree with you, apart from Kolasinac. Wenger has sat him on the bench to teach him a lesson for not tracking back when we are countered. It has been a few times that we conceded from his side of the pitch (including Southampton). There’s something about our players not tracking back. It’s like they’ve been told not to track back. It felt so so good to see Jack overtaking AMN and putting a block to the cross near the box (at the end).
We feel like they’re doing us a massive favour when they track back in counter attack. They get paid to do that!
The rest of your rant, is spot on…
Ps. I don’t know how or why have you received so many thumbs down

Gary Baldy
Gary Baldy

Maybe the use of the word ‘ despise ‘ and ‘ turd ‘ ? Also, I think Xhaka to suceed needs a CDM behind him. that ios to say, he is not being utilised in the most efficient way for his style.
Of course, you could say that is the hallmark of the current Wenger reign. Then again. that is how Wenger has often worked with palyers, giving them different roles to the ones they are accustomed to. The trouble being that not everyone adapts like Thierry Henry did.

Is that the managers fault for not realising that or the players fault for not trying hard enough or realising the benefits of the potential conversion ? Or the managers misjudgement of the players ability to adapt or the palyers unwillingness to adapt ?

It is all rather more nuanced than some are prepared to countenance !

Michael Bolton Wanderers
Michael Bolton Wanderers

You can’t accommodate a player as poor as xhaka, it won’t improve the team much. He’s still gonna play poor passes, make bad decisions and run slowly.
Xhaka is nowhere near as good as viera, Fabregas or cazorla. It won’t matter the formation

caligunner
caligunner

I agree. Xhaka isn’t someone who is world class you accommodate. He must isn’t fast or quick enough against well organized pressing clubs. He can’t play against them consistently. Its apparent when you see him tracking back. He is soo slow.

Julian+Gooner
Julian+Gooner

Xhaka’s only strength, nice looking passes, are only possible when he has time and space and only with his left foot. Any pressure and he gives it away cheaply.

Flashman71
Flashman71

Absolutely spot on. I think it is time for many arsenal fans to really wake up when it comes to xhaka and stop this oh it’s not his fault type defence e.g he not utilised in right way by wenger or we are not getting the best out of him with set up or system or he needs another player in there with him to cover him or mop up for him etc. Or look at his high passing statistics and completion rates or touches of the ball. It’s cobblers it is absolutely meaningless. Any of us who have played football at any level incl 6-aside could or should be able to stand there and pass a ball a few yards sideways or backwards under no pressure whatsoever, of course he has many touches of the ball because wenger’s football starts from the back with a deep lying mudfielder (same role as arteta and others in past – difference is cesc when he played that role on occasions as well as song etc. were quicker than xhaka even denilson for god sake!). Xhaka is so limited it is dreadful in the match he brings us nothing (great strike yesterday but let’s face it that is rare very rare). He is so slow he rarely gets to the ball in terms of tackles interceptions etc. that is why he gives away numerous free kicks he just can’t get there. The premiership just isn’t for him I am afraid and you are absolutely right he is not going to suddenly get quicker and therein lies the root of all his problems which in turn affects the most important aspect of arsenal’s play which should be tempo pace and speed. I don’t blame xhaka himself for our slow build up turgid at times play it is all wenger and he has been doing this with his sides for number of years now.

Tom Thumb
Tom Thumb

We’ve never replaced Fabregas.

dawn
dawn

Agree about Sanchez!

kaius
kaius

I find it absolutely ridiculous that people are writing seven-paragraph comments detailing how bad our team is without a solitary word for the man that chose to start to the season with this squad.

Wenger deserves a statue outside the Emirates. He doesn’t deserve to be treated like a novice manager in his 2nd season where we excuse all his mistakes and blame his players instead. After the United defeat he said “I feel personally responsible, the team should not get the blame.”

He gambled that Ramsey/Xhaka plus Wilshere/Elneny/Coquelin would form a good enough central midfield. He gambled that Cech still had a title-winning season in him. He gambled that he could motivate both Alexis and Ozil for one last season instead of selling both.

He’s losing all these gambles at once, and we’re treating him with kid gloves like some poor kid, instead of a vastly experienced manager whose players have lost faith in him because he’s been making the same mistakes for three seasons in a row.

Michael Bolton Wanderers
Michael Bolton Wanderers

You can’t say that unless your a manager with 20 year’s experience

kaius
kaius

I’m a fan with 27 years experience of supporting Arsenal. I can say he deserves a statue outside the Emirates even if he’s not doing a good job right now.

caligunner
caligunner

In fairness to him for this season.

Ram/Xhaka was solid in the last third of the season. So going into this season I wouldn’t have had a problem with that duo as the starters. Now tactically is a different story. There is not growth to Xhaka game like the last 10 games were a mere fluke. Your right the backups wasn’t something I was to keen on.

Again I think there is so much poison in the air about him that whatever he does if it isn’t spot on then he gets blamed for everything. I justdon’t think thats fair. He deserves his share but total blame isn’t fair imo.

Every manager gambles at the beginning of the season. Some have more room for mistakes because they can jsut keep buying until they get out of the trouble others not so much. AW is inbetween unfortunately.

PFo
PFo

His failure to make a change to shore things up when we inexplicably went 3-2 ahead was amateur hour. Any decent manager in world football would have made a sub and/or switched things up tactically at that point.

caligunner
caligunner

What change could he have done? I could see him replacing Xhaka-Coq or Iwobi-Welbeck-Walcott but there was roughly a third left in the game.

Tactically I just can’t see us absorbing pressure for 30 min do you? Thats asking alot for a club built to attack.

I don’t know if you consider Klopp decent but he didn’t change anything up going up 2-0.

Riku
Riku

Yes, klopp didn’t I would have brought on elneny to sit in front of the defence for iwobi and gone 4411, with ozilthe one behind the striker. That said at the time I was too busy smiling and celebrating to make a sub.

PFo
PFo

Are you really so dense? Does tactical-shift-to-be-more-solid necessarily equal absorbing-pressure-for-30-minutes? How about (just picking one randomly out of the air here…) Coq for Iwobi?

Klopp probably should’ve switched things up, but then they didn’t look remotely vulnerable until we scored the first goal (on the contrary, they looked like they were going to win the game about 4-0) and the remarkable rapidity with which we scored our second and third (helped out a lot by keeper incompetence) barely gave him a chance to make a decision before it was too late.

By contrast, we spent pretty much the entire game looking vulnerable when they attacked, and there were like 15 minutes (or thereabouts; I can’t bother to go back and check) between our third goal and their third.

haarish khan
haarish khan

Tooo many Gambles for a Manager in his 21st season at the club.

High+Plains+Gooner
High+Plains+Gooner

Generally agree, but piss off with the Koscielny slight. Not up to par these past few games, but he has been one of the best CBs in the league for ywars in spite of the efforts to completely leave him exposed on defense. “Mentally broken”? He has an Achilles issue and shouldn’t be relied upon to anchor the whole defense AGAIN, but to act like he is somehow wilting under pressure is AFTV levels of unnecessary disrespect.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

Worst thing I see the Achilles issue was created by Wenger; who went into the season with 3 CBs even though he knew Kos had the issue due to overplaying him the season before. We kept him on injections to survive. Terrible man management.

A Different George
A Different George

Koscielny, Mustafi, Mertesacker, Chambers, Holding. Monreal with experience as a centre half. You may think they’re all crap, but it’s not three, it’s five or six.

Adrian
Adrian

I’ve been pretty disgusted with Sanchez’s attitude this season. Coutinho wants to go to Barca but still, he busts a gut for Liverpool. As for Xhaka…the guy cannot pass! And, he clearly has no idea of his actual role in the side. As for Kos, the guy has been very poor this season. Not helped by the lack of defensive cover from the midfield.

A Different George
A Different George

I wish people would think about what they are saying. It’s perfectly reasonable to believe that Alexis has been awful, but I cannot see how anyone can think he has stopped trying. What did you *see* (not imagine) that makes you think Alexis is not working as hard as Coutinho?

caligunner
caligunner

I agree about Xhaka. I can’t figure out what kind of player he is. I don’t want to build a MF around him. I think he is as others have mentioned too slow and not quick at all. Can’t tackle. Can’t position himself correctly. Midtable or lower table is fine but against top clubs or organized pressing clubs it needs to stop.

I think you bought into the hype of Bellerin and thats not fair to him. He’s only 19 not world class. He’s going to have a learning curve. He is only 22 still learning the game. Yes he’s gotten worse then better but I still believe he isgiving his effort and at least thats what you can ask for

Iwobi I’m not a big fan of in the starting X1. Role player but thats it. He has a good first touch and can dribble in tight spaces. Other then that he ins’t great at anything as you say.

Kos is fine maybe it might help having a proper CB pairing with him instead of converted LB or CB who isn’t a good fit next time like Mustafi.

PFo
PFo

Having a great first touch and being able to dribble in tight spaces is an incredible asset, and not something you can teach a player in his twenties. Nor can you teach the physical athleticism and power he has. You can teach a player how to be more composed and make better decisions around the penalty box. Iwobi has huge potential, but he’s stagnated a bit. Wenger and his coaching staff is failing him at the moment.

goonshow
goonshow

You also can’t teach laziness and lack of commitment or selfishness… so that’s all young Alex’s own doing and not the ‘coaching staff’. Talent ain’t enough at his age… I watch him carefully every time he plays (see my previous comments on this) and he is disgracefully lazy and self-interested: NEVER puts in a tackle unless the player is right on top on him; NEVER tracks backs; strolls around on the halfway line whenever we don’t have the ball and only bursts into life when we’re going forward, glory hungry for a run… seldom lays it off when near the box, he’s ignored open players in way better positions at least half a dozen times in the last few games in favour of a ridiculously optimistic long shot.
Does NOT belong in the first team. Period.

Third Plebeian
Third Plebeian

I don’t understand the point of Alexis and Iwobi. They make us worse. Wenger has no idea how to assemble a team.

Eyob
Eyob

Actually, Wenger’s greatest asset as a manager is his know how how to assemble a team. No manager has assembled decent teams from scratch time and again as much as Arsene only to be dismantled by the transfer markets. It’s just that his current team lacks balance and chemistry.

Mick Malthouse
Mick Malthouse

Anony – spot on. Show most of them the door and start again with a new manager. Our positional play was embarrassing.

Flashman71
Flashman71

Absolutely right about xhaka (worst midfielder seen at arsenal since early 80s to slow for prem, bundesliga or swiss 1st division player at best bloke would struggle in championship let alone pace and intensity of prem top flight and as for iwobi reminds me most of the time of a kid on the playground just running around he overpings his passes all the time and can’t strike a ball properly. Our greatest problem is that we basically just don’t have enough top top players anymore (2 or 3 maybe) whatever system or setup we play most of us can see it and know it but the frightening thing is wenger can’t see it or refuses to believe it! I think this fact is reinforced by or evidenced by the absolute dross we have been watching overall for past few seasons and particularly this season. Wenger is simply not capable of putting out a team of arsenal players to beat middle of the table or lower table teams away from home and as for top 6 teams home or away well I mean we all know how that is. It really reveals a lot when over the past years we have to literally put in magnificent one off performances to draw at chelsea and beat spurs etc. It’s almost perceived as some giant killing act now. We are arsenal not some lower league team on a cup run. We should always be going up against the other big clubs as we used to on a par 50-50 chance of winning (as we used to). We have declined so much over past few seasons that not only have us the fans expectations lowered significantly (realism here to an extent) but depressingly the board’s and management also. One day ivan gaz talking about the arsenal reaching level of bayern and emulating them etc. and then few seasons later stating that we should be aspiring to the likes of leicester dortmund rb leipzig athl madrid. All very sad really.

A Different George
A Different George

Yeah, those Bundeliga players, they’re not up to the quality of the English game. You know, like De Bruyne.

Flashman71
Flashman71

Good point, apologies meant in terms of general tempo, bundesliga as a whole is a slower league and therefore xhaka’s snail like movement and thought processes were more suitable etc. Shame xhaka wasn’t de bruyne.

A Different George
A Different George

From the (relatively little) I have watched of the Bundesliga, it does not appear to me to be significantly slower-paced than the Prem. It’s not Spain or Italy and I think Aubameyang or Lewandowski would do fine on an English top-four side. In fairness, I don’t often see German matches that don’t involve the top teams.

Santi\'s Thigh Grab
Santi\'s Thigh Grab

To be a competitive side challenging for the title, we need players of quality and a manager that selects the right squad and deploys them tactically. We have neither at this point.

Players I would keep fin the first 11 include Monreal, Lacazette, Ozil, Holding & AMN. I would be looking for 6 new top players for the remaining positions.

Squad players I would keep who have an opportunity to break into the top 11 include: Wilshire, Mustafi, Czech, Bellerin, Macey, Iwobi, Giroud, Eddie, Nelson, Willock, Kola, Chambers.

Players that need to be shipped: Sanchez, Theo, Dat Guy, Coq, Xhaka, Elneny and Kos (love the guy but doesn’t have it anymore).

Arsene IMO doesn’t have it in him to be ruthless about shipping players out, its part of the culture he has established at the club which has positives, doing the right thing by Santi and negatives, keeping Walcott long past the date he was first 11 material.

I’ll continue to watch games but not with any sense of optimism that anything will change until Arsene hangs up is his puffy coat. The man is a giant in our Club’s history, achieved many top trophies and gave us a playing identity. We are now a cup team with a challenge for the title nowhere in sight. A different manager could get more out of this squad but even this squad is not good enough.

Feng Sports
Feng Sports

I don’t know why Lacazette has such a low score. He was constantly making runs along to be picked out.. He deserves at least a 7.5

Anony
Anony

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I’m going to repeat this. I watch Arsenal with my heart clenched in my fists. I would give anything for Arsenal. When I see an Arsenal player fail to show that same level of committment, I instantly despise them. I can’t help this. Unfortunately for my health, Arsenal just means that much for me.

I absolutely despise Alexis Sanchez. I understand why he feels delusioned at the club and has given up but at the end of the day I’m an Arsenal fan not a Sanchez fan. Anything he does wrong is magnified on a massive scale for me. He did well to get us back into it but every attack broke down when he got the ball and he fucked us for Liverpool’s third goal. It literally makes no sense for him to be on the pitch any more. I don’t know what he needs to do to get dropped. He would have to literally try and score against us to be any worse.

Anony
Anony

Unbelievable.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I’m going to repeat this. I watch Arsenal with my heart clenched in my fists. I would give anything for Arsenal. When I see an Arsenal player fail to show that same level of committment, I instantly despise them. I can’t help this. Unfortunately for my health, Arsenal just means that much for me.

I absolutely despise Alexis Sanchez. I understand why he feels delusioned at the club and has given up but at the end of the day I’m an Arsenal fan not a Sanchez fan. Anything he does wrong is magnified on a massive scale for me. He did well to get us back into it but every attack broke down when he got the ball and he fucked us for Liverpool’s third goal. It literally makes no sense for him to be on the pitch any more. I don’t know what he needs to do to get dropped. He would have to literally try and score against us to be any worse.

Anony
Anony

I don’t know what a Granit Xhaka is. I don’t think he knows either. Play Maitland-Niles in midfield and bring Kolasinac back. I don’t care if we lose, I just can’t see that turd of a player mucking about in midfield anymore. Easily one of the worst transfers we have made in the last 7 years. Jack Wilshere gets a 9.5 for me. He did all the dirty work in midfield. He matched Salah and Mane for pace on many occasions and besides Ainsley was the only player who battled out there.

This meme about Bellerin’s hair needs to stop. The problem is Wenger and the coaching staff. If you get a 19-year-old player who immediately slots into the side and is arguably top 3 in his position in the world in his debut season but somehow ends up being shit in 3 years you deserve to lose your job.

The Alex Iwobi experiment needs to stop. He was never rated highly as a youth player and a lucky streak early on has somehow turned him into a first team player. Alex Iwobi knows he is inferior, he is embarassed when he gets the ball. Just get rid off him.

I was one of those dumb kids who used to call him Bosscielny. He is finished. There is no such thing as an Arsenal Captain curse. The moment any of these fragile players are given extra responsibility they lose their bottle. It’s not a coincedence. Koscielny looks broken mentally. Aaron Ramsey was right.

It really has reached the point that the only Arsenal players that I am desperate to keep are Lacazette, Ozil, Wilshere, Maitland-Niles and Kolasinac. I don’t think most fans would disagree with this.

Donovan Ricketts
Donovan Ricketts

He’s gone from top 3 player in the league last season, to literally the worst this season. I understand that he’s unhappy and wanted to leave, but talent can’t desert you that quickly. He just actually be trying to play badly. In which case, fuck him.

Really really pray he gets sold on 1st Jan for whatever pittance we can salvage – then sits on the bench at Citeh for 18 months before heading to Grenada or something more fitting. Was going to suggest something about a cruciate injury, but that might be taking it too far ☺️

Alexstratz
Alexstratz

One of our players just scored the first crucial goal to get us back in the game and you almost wish him injury. Nice.

A Different George
A Different George

Sometimes Arsenal supporters can be as blind and as stupid as those for other clubs.

GoonerJust
GoonerJust

Citeh would think twice to buy alexis at the current form. He will become a $400k/week-forward that disrupt citeh’s fluid play with his desire to dribble around.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

I don’t think Guardiola will cater to him like Wenger does. He will coach him and instruct him and if he doesn’t doesnt comply, he’ll get benched.

A Different George
A Different George

Really? I see Sterling–though much better than he was before–still making incredible mistakes in judgment, horrible first touches, and abysmal crosses–and starting every match. In many of them he, eventually, scores a goal. Perhaps (just like Wenger) Pep does not think talented players are automotons who need to “comply,” but wants them to create.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

Sterling is 22. Whats Sanchez’ excuse?

A Different George
A Different George

My point is that Guardiola is much more like Wenger (and Klopp) in his attitude towards players than you recognise. On the other side are Mourinho, Conte, and, with less talented sides, managers like Pulis.

goonshow
goonshow

You’re right. It IS too far.
And that’s all you’re right about.

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

I feel your pain mate

Hank Wankford
Hank Wankford

Fuck knows anymore. Anyone?

Primipare
Primipare

Wenger had been saying it’s psychological for quite some time. If so, it’s on him, and him only. Alexis needs to go ASAP. Poor professional. Xakha needs to go ASAP. Poor player. Would be a good start for January

Greg
Greg

Strongest team mentally he’s ever had but a bad game a few games ago and they are done for still

Little Mozart
Little Mozart

I enjoyed it.

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

If you did, then you’re not a Rosicky fan, but Kane fan

Big fred
Big fred

Captain jack man of the match for me. Last home game for Özil and Alexis hopefully time to move on

Primipare
Primipare

Not always obvious which side Alexis plays for. Afc or their opponent

dawn
dawn

It’s obvious to me – sanchez F.C. – first and foremost!

Truthteller
Truthteller

You gave wilshere a 6 .. had Ramsey played as good as wilshere you would of gave him atleast a 7. Cheh was at fault for firminho goal and could of done better for the goal against salah.. it’s clear which players you prefer.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

I wanted to say this but got a hard time last time for doing so. There is a clear difference in blog’s bias between jack and Ramsey, I feel.

Stringer+Bell
Stringer+Bell

Can you imagine Ramsey sprinting back in 81st minute to clear up lose ball. Not in a million years. He only needs to do one good thing in a game to get a good (great) report from blogs ?

Levonson
Levonson

Even when he’s not playing stringer? Never change mate.

JazzyFizzle
JazzyFizzle

Let’s not start cracking on about biases. Most of us have been following arseblog long enough to know that Blogs is a pretty good reader of the game. I do think Jack was really good today and deserved at least an 8. But, as has been said, player ratings are subjective.

As a team we were pants today.

PFo
PFo

On bias: the idea that Bellerin, who was mostly terrible (apart from one good cross), got the same score from Blogs as Ozil and Wilshere is laughable.

ach
ach

It’s funny because the opposite is also true. I like how people blame ramsey when xhaka playing like shit but when he is paired with jack, everyone agreed that xhaka is shit and need to be sold.

Ross
Ross

A bit harsh on AMN I thought he had an excellent performance against arguably the best player in the league right now. Really mature, never dived in and his passing was snappy.

Steinn
Steinn

Agreed, I thought AMN was excellent. Didn’t do much in attack but many great defensive moments and his passing was precise as always.

Gunnerelite
Gunnerelite

I did enjoy AMN’s display as well, to the point where Salah even switched over to our right with Mane trying to target AMN, but even Mane was taken off

ronaldo
ronaldo

he,s not the best player in the league

Gandalf
Gandalf

Oh come on. He did as well as he could, but was exposed on the ball and defensively, especially first half.

I’m not knocking him, the blame goes to the manager.

Tyler
Tyler

Iwobi seems to be the latest in what is becoming an alarming number of players to regress under Arsene Wenger. How many (often young) players now have started with such promise, only to sink to the realm of mediocrity (or worse)? Teach them! Jazz might be dead.

Cool Papa Bellerin
Cool Papa Bellerin

I thought it was Bellerin’s best game in a while. He was the least culpable of our defenders, tracked Salah and Mane down a few times, and played a tasty ball for Alexis’ goal.

Pretty much everyone else needs two separate ratings, one for the glorious 5 minutes in the second half and another for the shower of shite before and after.

PFo
PFo

For what it’s worth, I thought he was mostly awful. He seems to have completely lost his pace, and he gives the ball away far, far too often.

Cool Papa Bellerin
Cool Papa Bellerin

Maybe, I might need to watch again. I’m mostly remembering specific moments–a good tackle from the ground in the first half, a few long sprints to close down Salah and Mane, the cross for Alexis, and a decent shot to force a save from Mignolet.

The fact that he had a few bright moments and wasnt really at fault for any of their goals probably qualifies it as his best game in a while, given the poor form he’s been in.

A Different George
A Different George

I thought Bellerin has played much better the past couple of matches. Obviously, he’s more comfortable as a fullback than a wingback. It did not help him that Iwobi was playing in front of him. No one will believe me, but Hector was at his best when Walcott played on the right and (this is the part no one will believe) used his pace to track back and help cover that side of the pitch.

Ricardo
Ricardo

I agree with you on the bonus rating.

Neutrals can say it was a fun, not Arsenal fans. I was furious. It really ruined my weekend.

Not as much as it would have 10 years ago though, Arsene has engrained that in me with his teams.

Gary+Baldy
Gary+Baldy

Maybe it was just me, I thought AMN 30 had a really good game, and the fact that both of their first two goals came when he was caught too far forward was no coincidence.
I thought he kept Salah reasonably well sheparded with help from Monrael and Xhaka. Can’t say much about their third as I was down the other end and then missed the stadium replays. Still a good prospect and did better than I dared hope before kick-off !

Surely start Welbeck ahead of Iwobi so we can at least have some width. We are in need of a winger and would I be shot down if I suggested Lacazette needs to play in a front two ? At least until he has come to terms with the Premier League.

Stephen
Stephen

He doesn’t need to come to terms. He needs some some bloody service.

Maniac
Maniac

Agree 100%. Lee Dixon said it best – “Lacazette needs to go and introduce himself to his team mates at half time. Hey guys, it’s me, the one with the number 9 on my back”.

It is absolutely infuriating for me that we have a truly world class striker in the team but are completely failing to utilise him. Gets no service whatsoever, runs around like a madman trying to win the ball back, makes great runs but is never found and is clearly highly motivated to score (apparently not yet indoctrinated into the culture of mediocrity here at Arsenal). If I was Lacazette I’d be absolutely livid. He’s basically a one man team up top and he’s doing the best he can with what little he gets. We desperately need to get a playmaker who clicks with him (my personal choice would be Fekir) or at least instruct our players to attempt to find him. I seriously worry that we have a huge talent in our hands but are going to lose him because we failed to provide any service to give him a fighting chance with us.

eternalflamini
eternalflamini

Loving what Özil is doing at the moment. Sanchez…. wtf, such a hard player to assess. So completely shit and makes the team so much worse for his wasteful presence and yet score such a crucial, crucial goal.

Matty
Matty

Iwobi starting I don’t understand, he Is simply not good enough. But strange decisions from Wenger is now the norm

caligunner
caligunner

I don’t disagree but who would have started instead? I would have preferred Theo in a game like this knowing Liverpool were going to go end to end and press. He could at least punish them with his pace on quick counters. Only reason I wouldn’t pick Welbeck is he is clinical enough on the finish and at least Walcott can be.

BW9
BW9

Came here all the way from America to watch the game. I almost cried during our 5 or 6 minute goal fest. Best 6 minutes of my life, just ask my wife ;). Yes the result wasn’t the best but pls fellow Gunners don’t take for granted what you lot get to come see each week.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

Thought Jack was great. That pass he made to Ozil was class.
But outside of that, nothing I can say that hasn’t been said before. Team is a tactical shambles. Only Wenger would build his entire midfield on no.10s then surprised at them being defensively naïve.

Billy+Enfield
Billy+Enfield

?
That’s what I thought after final whistle. Wenger has the same philosophy as Pep (if I ever could, I would play 10 midfielders as outfield players)…
But with an extremely bad tactical plan. We realistically, have no proper professional defender at AFC… And that’s a FACT!

Man Manny
Man Manny

Why is Alexis getting off so easily? At some point tonight I thought he was deliberately ruining the game.
If Kolasinac is sitting on the bench for no obvious reason (apart from maybe the change in formation), Alexis should be benched for the next game; he could have been in a liverpool shirt actually. 40% pass completion rate in the first half says it all.
Iwobi had another poor game, game filled with aimless running into blind alleys, poor passes and loose marking.
One thing is clear: Arsene has truly taken this team backward. This bunch is not even up to a poor.imitation of the ’07 – ’08 team. Sad times!

dawn
dawn

Absolutely disagree with your comments about Arsene! But Sanchez spot on!

Matt+P
Matt+P

His comments about Arsene are entirely fair. Our once great manager is past it, is tactically naive and seems to be unable to inspire his team on a regular basis.

caligunner
caligunner

Kola is being benched because he wasn’t tracking back and making poor decisions in the last 2-3 matches.

I don’t disagree with Sanchez but I wonder if his bad passing and possession is based on us knowing its his last season. Has he always been this loose with the ball and bad passes?

Iwobi isn’t a starter sad to say. Nice guy but not good enough at this point.

gooner71
gooner71

Unhappy to watch Jack not clobber Saleh in the Liverpool half and instead run alongside with him as Saleh glided in for an easy finish past a poor attempt to stop his shot.

podb
podb

With the whole Arsenal supporting world yelling “just hack the bastard” … our ”defenders” have to be ruthless.
Alexis is woefully out of form, didn’t celebrate his goal, looked like a spoiled child on the bench with a dud Xmas present when he was subbed. Got to go. Soon. Keep Mesut, get Draxler and Van Dijk. Then kick on.

Clay
Clay

Don’t you dare blame Jack, he is the flavour of the month /s.
I though him and Xhaka were very poor, I actually missed Ramsey.

IceBerg10
IceBerg10

Then you’re an idiot

Olivije Zirou
Olivije Zirou

If you want to win Liverpool you need to keep a shape and if not you are finished. We were lucky not to lose game in the first half.

The biggest worry is the lack of communication in the team. Wilshere was heavily involved with two of our goals. What was he thinking for the 2nd? Why did he left tracking Salah for Firmino if both Koscielny and Mustafi were already on him? Also involved in the third goal for letting Firmino but Koscielny should also do better there. Another great example of naivety is the last Salah’s chance. 3 players went on Wijnaldum and left Salah alone.

Also feel sorry for Cech. He kept us again in the game. He was not at fault for the 3rd goal. Firmino had all 4 angles free to shoot. It was horribIle defending. I guarentee if Cech would have stand still like most goalkeepers would no one would say a word.

Why so bad ratings for Niles, Xhaka and Ozil? Imo they have done pretty well. Lacazette ok, Iwobi bad going forward but at least solid at defending. But I want to see Walcott on Thursday. He looked sharp today. Same for Bellerin – offensively not good enough.

Sanchez is a liabilty. Stopped counting how many balls he lost again. Why he just can’t be dangerous. Why does he so much wants to have a ball in his feet. He should be running in behind and actually BE in the box. For one time he was he scored.

Olivije Zirou
Olivije Zirou

Wilshere was heavily involved with two of Liverpool’s goals*

Alexstratz
Alexstratz

I like blogs realism. There’s no such thing as entertainment when you don’t get the result to go with. Winning is fun. Losing points not so much.

MarinPK
MarinPK

For once I really disagree with some ratings. Especially with Maintland-Niles, while I was skeptical he was quite impressive, the first goal is a conter-attack so we should not be too harsh on him, after that he did very well against Mane, kept fighting, won a decent number of balls (with much less fouls than Kolasinac), and I loved that tackle at the 93th. I also think that Koscielny wasn’t that bad, he was very exposed and a bit unlucky at times (as on the first goal), but there would have been much more chances for Liverppol without him, Nacho and Mustafi had much less impact. Jack may deserve a bit more as he was our best midfielder, and Lacazette could not do much more with the balls he got and he achieved to be decisive. But I agree with Alexis and Iwobi, the team would benefit from better wingers, both slow down the game with too much touches, always do the bad choice and loose so many balls. Ozil cannot create chances and score goals alone. The issue is that on the bench we only have Wellbeck – who doesn’t add anything since he came back from injury – and Theo, and it might be too soon for Nelson. A winger and a defensive midfield (I’m kind of loosing my patience with Xhaka) seem to be the main area to look at during the next transfer windows.

caligunner
caligunner

I think in a weird way Theo would have been perfect for a game like this. It isn’t like Iwobi did anything great defensively that Walcott who seems very motivated to prove himself couldn’t do. With the lack of defensive cohesion that Liverpool have Theo with his pace and finishing ability could have exploited it better?

QMantis
QMantis

It’s so frustrating seeing the same kind of poor disorganised weak displays littered with individual mistakes over and over. The balance is always wrong and players clearly out of form not benched. We lost the first half 0-2 but won the second half 3-1 With the only change….a proper cb playing as a cb. Why not just start with your best defence and play your form players in their proper positions. Squeezing in your favourites just fucks it all up. Why not get the whole team organised at 3-2 to park the bus be professional and see out the game instead of being brittle and giving teams chances and space over and over until we get punished. Makes for fun watching only if it’s someone’s else’s team. Rant over..until the next time!

Steinn
Steinn

I can’t handle anymore of Granit Xhaka. Sure, he does have his moments (his pass to Özil for the third goal for example) but what a frustrating player he is. Needless give-aways, poor tracking back (Coutinho’s goal anybody?) and just lack of any penetration in general. At this point I would pick any of Coq, Elneny or AMN in front of him.

dawn
dawn

Xhakas goal anybody?

caligunner
caligunner

Just because you score a goal doesn’t absolve the player and his faults.

Bertieme
Bertieme

Poor for the 70 minutes Liverpool dominated. Everyone to blame. The defence is poor. No cover and LK absolutely shocking. The midfield is completely ineffectual, and that includes JW.

Fireman Sam
Fireman Sam

Sanchez voted our worst player again. How times have changed. Sad to see. I have NFI what he thinks he’s doing.

ronaldo
ronaldo

ten out of ten for jack

Jamie
Jamie

They can thumb you down all they want, but only because they know you are right. JW looked great today. He also put in a stellar defensive shift.

Indian+Gooner
Indian+Gooner

There was a very long spell in the first half when our players just couldn’t spot their fellow men in red and it almost looked like they deliberately passed it to the opponent wearing some shitty fluorescent.Looked like all our players had either gone colour blind or had totally forgotten the basics of passing the ball. That is how bad it was! It was a terrific come back from where we were. But it definitely was not a performance that we could all be proud of.
A lot senior players in that team are in the waiting queue for a drop.

Gary Baldy
Gary Baldy

There is a very real and good chance they got confused and thought they were Arsenal Stewards . . . that is the only explaination I and those around me could thing of . . .

Matt+P
Matt+P

I am a Jack skeptic, but today I thought he was very good. A 7 or 8.
I also thought Ozil deserved a 7.
We were pretty bad today – lucky not to lose.

Big+Sheezy
Big+Sheezy

I feel terrible for badmouthing squillacci all those years ago. Apparently he was set up to fail.

Matt+P
Matt+P

Iwobi was awful – a 3 for me. Xhaka was bad too, even with the goal I wouldn’t give him more than a 4.5. Sanchez and the central defenders very poor too.

Gary Baldy
Gary Baldy

Also, we don’t seem to have options for players to pass to. Sanchez loses the ball regularly but a few times not only he but others had no options and got tackled or crowded out . . . hardly their fault if noone offers themselves.

we need a proper CDM to hold the ball when we break and to break up the opponents moves. We need a proper winger.

Tonight’s problems, and previous bad performances have been down to, in part, these issues, regardless of being a back three or back four. If Wenger wants Xhaka in the line up he needs a CDM to give him a platform. That said, Xhaka needs to up his game as well.

There are those who would call for a new keeper as well. Me ? I’m undecided, protect the defence a bit more and then they will protect the keeper a bit more . . . but still, it might be a consideration for the summer.

Another thought might be that a little more competition for Bellerin would not go amiss. Could Debuchy be our ‘ Renaissance Man ‘ ? Currently no, but maybe another question for the summer transfer window / reserve team promotion.

caligunner
caligunner

Bellerin is the only one that tracks back consistently to help. I think everyone believed in his hype and have him pigeonholed as this world class player at 19? he wasn’t he just burst onto the scene and because Barca wanted him back even put more hype on him. He’s still growing as a player. I think MD is good also but I can’t see him doing well against a team like Liverpool how high presses. Imagine how slow the defense would have been with him and Xhaka and JW on the pitch.

goonshow
goonshow

Completely agree. Having the a player as lazy and uncommitted to any form of defending as Iwobi in front of him puts him in a hopeless position.

BigArse
BigArse

Koulibaly, Koulibaly, Koulibaly, Van Dijk.
Koulibaly, Koulibaly, with him our defence might be less shite.
David Luiz, Johnny Evans, Sol Campbell, my wife.
With one of them in the the defensive centre we might really be a bit less shife.

(Set to either my darling clementine or o Christmas tree. I know it doesn’t really scan but what do you want? This is Arsenal.)

Charvakan

If you can’t have fun watching a game like today’s, no matter who you support, you’re not the football fan you think you are. Sorry. But that was an exciting game. We had some really nice spells outside of those 5 minutes, too.

Alexis is completely undisciplined and has poor judgment lots of times. Yes, he gave the ball away many times, AGAIN. But the guy scraps for every ball. It’s not just the 50-50s; he goes for the 20-80s and wins some. He contests headers with guys a foot taller and it sometimes works–like the Ozil goal against Newcastle. Pep would get the most out of Alexis by forcing him to do what he’s told or not playing him. We’re not in a position to sit him down when he’s fit. Who ya gonna call–Theo? Nketiah? Yeah, Theo’s your disciplined player who never gives the ball away. Right. We should have sold Alexis in the summer; now he’s a shadow of last year’s version and we’re going to get bupkis for him. But he’s very good, don’t kid yourself. He needs a coach he respects/fears to improve his game.

Iwobi didn’t have the best of games, but I like him. Again, who should be starting in front of him? If we had Mane or Salah, it would be a different story. We have Welbeck and Walcott. Nice guys and good footballers, but neither would do any better than Iwobi today (they both came on today and did you notice an improvement?), and Iwobi will get better.

Xhaka’s first half was catastrophic. He almost gave away a chance on a weak backpass in the first minute or two, and didn’t improve until after the break. I was amazed he didn’t get a crazy card. I really liked Jack’s game today overall, and Ozil had one of his best games of the season. Lacazette worked hard and should have been found more often.

Kos is a wonderful player still, but he needs more rest. Liverpool’s front line makes every defense look fragile. AMN did everything we could have hoped for; I agree with those who think he should be given a game or three as DM.

It’s a mystery why we start every game so slow. Maybe Arsene should give the halftime talk before the first half.

Cristian T.
Cristian T.

I feel that we are lacking al least two things: work rate and tactical awarness. Let me tell you why:
1. Let’s face it: we have an average midfield for EPL. Our midfield should be doing much more defensive/offensive work in order to support our defenders/attackers. E.g. See how we conceded our second goal and our first half attacking.
2. When I say tactical awarness I am thinking especially at our first half. It is not possible at this level not to be aware of a counter attack or to be completely dominated at home. Overall positioning was a joke. It was like we had no midfield. Midfielders have support both attack and defense. 90mins!
At the end we all should be aware of some facts:
a) we need proper work rate
b) manage to bring an improvement to alexis which will leave( let’s say draxler)
c) attempt to keep Ozil
d) Buy a midfield Powerhouse since we lack one( let’s say William Carvalho( just an example))

Lance Banner
Lance Banner

Let’s have Jens as manger for a year and whoever is left standing can stay and start the rebuilding.

Xhakalaca
Xhakalaca

Dropping Iwobi for Coquelin in the 4-3-3 will at least help us in defending better

Monkey knees
Monkey knees

Think most of the ratings are harsh.

caligunner
caligunner

Xhaka. I really don’t know what he is and the idea of him in a midfield 3 or getting a proper DM for him to play off is crazy. Why would you build MF around him? He isn’t world class. He had a goal today and give him props for that. Overall he can’t play against quality high pressing clubs. His back to the defense he isn’t quick enough with his hips to turn and pass and move forward. He takes a split second to long when he does against quality pressing clubs and cant function that he can get away with against mid to lower table clubs. He can’t turn and dribble away from the pressing defender so thats out of the question so only 2 things happen he either gets dispossessed or he’s forced to make a back pass and either the CB is forced to make a bad pass and the counter is on.

If we are going to keep a 2 or 3 man MF like alot of you have said we need a Coq with some competent dribbling and passing ability. I’m not asking for world class just competent. Pair him up with Wilshere or Ramsey and move the other player to the wing preferably Ramsey

Time to bench Sanchez. I never thought a competitor like him would play so bad or is it just being magnified now that he is in his last year? I would use him as a super sub at the most and leave it at that. I don’t know if I would still sell him.

Bellerin is over hyped at 19. He was great coming out of nowhere with his athleticism but he is still learning to play.

meneam
meneam

When wenger leaves us at the end of his contract he will leave us a terrible situation.. this team has no spine. and with sanchez leaving and maybe ozil too it will be just a team of average players.it will be hard for the next manager

Lula
Lula

Well that was a shit show. Enjoyed Wilshere, Lacazetta and Maitland-Niles’ performance.

Sanchez – I just want to leave. I’m so sick of watching him lose the ball. I don’t care if we can’t compete without him. Although I think there are players out there.

Ozil – I have more time for but for what he is asking I’m happy for him to leave.

Want to watch us have to grit and savvy. Maybe I’m just projecting. We need something new.

That said, we didn’t get hammered. And now its the holidays.

Have a good christmas, everyone.

Espen
Espen

Whats wrong with Kos? The decline of his quality in defense is a little hard to take in such a short period of time.

Huss
Huss

I guess the big question is: what are we? Manchester City’s performance this year has masked an otherwise lackluster league this season. ManU is blah. Chelsea is blah. Liverpool is probably 2nd best with that attack, but their defensive struggles are well documented

And then there’s us. We’re really not good, and we have too much talent to be bad. But we looked really, really bad for decent stretches of this game. It was just sad. There doesn’t seem to be any coherence to the attack. We are entirely reliant upon an Alexis Special here or an Ozil Pass There and that’s about all we got. There’s no movement off the ball. When we play the ball into the final third, everyone just kind of stands around and it turns into a game of 1-on-1. Our midfield is clunky. Back 4, back 3 – it doesn’t matter when the players you have just don’t play well. Our options off the bench are…less than inspiring.

Maybe this team will end up finishing top 4 and end up with better counting stats than our club the past few years, but Wenger’s team feels even more stale than usual. We’re certainly not good, and Ozil/Sanchez/Lacazette prevents us from being all that bad. I’ll take whatever I can get from this club, but fuck I was hoping to at least enjoy watching Arsenal play this year. Whatever. At least sp*rs suck. Onward. COYG.

Stephen
Stephen

We’re the fourth or fifth best team in the league. At best.

AusDrexler
AusDrexler

I think the comments about Iwobi could reflect on the whole team at the moment.

Alex
Alex

I enjoyed it and I don’t apologise

Emmanuel Chukwuma
Emmanuel Chukwuma

The irony of this arsenal team is that though we had a great come back and led 3:2, something was telling me that we were going to concede the equalizer and we did!

Paul Smith
Paul Smith

Feel a bit sorry for Iwobi. What position is he playing? He looks lost and low on confidence but he’s not being helped by being asked to play a role he clearly isn’t used to and doesn’t understand. Is he supposed to be a box to box midfielder now? Feels like we are wasting his best attributes using him the way we are…also we still get no service to Lacazette and this formation is so narrow anyone can defend against it

Matt
Matt

We need to sell Sanchez this window. He is on the decline.
City is now best option for me, as the way he is playing he would make them a worse team.

yen
yen

17 goals conceded in last 5 games against Liverpool. We haven’t learned anything. Part of me is baffled that those miraculous 5 minutes allowed Wenger to get a free pass and not be held accountable for what was disastrous at times over the remaining 85 minutes.

1) Cut the AMN left back experiment

Don’t get me wrong, he was one of our best players last night. As AW said after the game, his recovery runs combined with the ability to not make stupid fouls is great and as I said earlier, I understand the idea of giving youngsters an out of position experience to learn the trade.

Yet this just felt like shoehorning him into the squad. He’s not a left back/wingback and even Wenger doesn’t want him to be one. So why use him there in a 6 point game against an in-form Salah, if you have other, more natural options? Are we going to use him as a LB every week now before we burn him out? When will the exact moment when he “learns the trade” be so that we can move him to his natural position?

Because don’t get me wrong, we could definitely use his skills in the midfield. And it’s not like our starting midfielders are doing ridiculously well at the moment. Don’t make a huge deal out of it and just shift him there.

2) Give Koscielny a break

He’s been far from his standard for a while now. I understand that his age, having to play so many games in a row and his chronic achilles all play a huge part in that. So just give him a break and pass the chance to one of the youngsters. It’s not like they have no experience – Wenger was actually absolutely ok with using them week in week out when they were freshmen, yet now he resits to use them?

3) Study the Lacazette

I feel like we’ve got a great striker on our hands and we haven’t come even close to figuring out how to utilize him. He’s absolutely different striker from Giroud, yet it doesn’t feel like we adjusted our game to this fact whatsoever. But then again, we haven’t adapted our game to Giroud either. One could say we often lack a game plan…

4) And Xhaka as well

Don’t play him if you don’t know how. Next time, try something different. Start 3 in the midfield and pass some of his defensive responsibilities on AMN. It’s not the end of the world if it doesn’t work out.

5) Bench Alexis

Yeah.

6) Part ways with Wenger in the summer

We’re no idiots, we all know what he’s done for the club and we’ll give him the farewell he deserves. But we need a fresh start.