Arsenal drew 0-0 against Manchester United in the Premier League Saturday night, extending their unbeaten run in the competition to seven matches.
Pre-match nerves were settled when it was confirmed that Thomas Partey and Emile Smith Rowe were passed fit to play, only for fear to sink in when Bukayo Saka was left out of the squad at the last minute with a sore hip. Kieran Tierney was also not passed fit.
Bernd Leno (GK) – 7/10 – Stunning flying save in the first half to deny Fred the opener and was quick off his line to close the space for Marcus Rashford later on. Another solid performance to maintain his rightfully strong reputation.
Hector Bellerin (RB) – 5/10 – Had zero impact in an attacking sense. Defensively he struggled against the excellent Luke Shaw, who was superb on the night, yet was otherwise untroubled. However, more is needed from him in the final third where he was non-existent.
Rob Holding (CB) – 7/10 – A decent enough evening from Holding despite a couple of dodgy moments, but as ever he put his body on the line in and outside the box and was a commanding presence in the air.
David Luiz (CB) – 7/10 – A mixed bag (in the first hald) from David Luiz who was guilty of some passes that lacked sharpness and care, yet he was vital in a few defensive situations, including his block from Bruno Fernandes’ free kick.
As capable of an error as he is a goal-saving intervention. Was an important figure in the heart of defence.
Cedric Soares (LB) – 6/10 – Having been booked early on Cedric did well to maintain his energy levels throughout. Was hindered by Willian’s arrival as the pair have absolutely no chemistry whatsoever. That does apply to anyone with the Brazilian, mind you.
Thomas Partey (CM) – 5/10 – This was not a display that anyone saw coming. While there were moments of the Partey supporters have become accustomed to, it was generally very sloppy from the Ghanaian who misplaced passes and got caught in dangerous areas.
Looked better in the second half – there was an understanding that grew as the match wore on – but it was still underwhelming by his own high standards. Clearly isn’t fully fit. It showed.
Granit Xhaka (CM) – 7/10 – With Partey being surprisingly off boil, it was vital that Xhaka was composed in the centre of the park, which he was. Nothing outstanding from the Swiss but he did well in situations that called for it and spread the ball diagonally well.
Covered a lot of ground and did so well.
Emile Smith Rowe (AM) – 7/10 – Also guilty of a few sloppy moments when Arsenal were in promising areas, yet as a ball carrier and a reliable presence in the final third it was Smith Rowe who was the most dangerous asset Arsenal had.
Constantly initiating the press, he was visibly barking order to Nicolas Pepe on where and when the engage the man on the ball. His energy was plain to see.
Nicolas Pepe (RW) – 8/10 – Moving out on the right side having impressed on the opposite flank against Southampton, a drop off was both expected and understandable. However, while he wasn’t as dangerous as he was on the south coast, he broke out very well with and without the ball and performed his defensive duties excellently.
Being pinned back by Luke Shaw for large stages of the match, he managed the game as well as he could have given the circumstances. Impressive outing.
The Ivorian led the Gunners’ press. Provided no shortage of attacking threat as well and would have scored not for a good block from Harry Maguire.
Alexandre Lacazette (ST) – 6/10 – Desperately unlucky to see his free-kick cannon off the underside of the bar, a goal his effort probably desired. Showed poor decision making in the first half when he fired straight at De Gea with options either side.
It was the usual battling display from the Frenchman.
Gabriel Martinelli (LW) – 6/10 – Another player who was perhaps more effective in his own half, the covering from Martinelli when Cedric was caught too far infield is indicative of his mentality and desire. He did struggle against Wan-Bissaka on occasion, a defender who is excellent in one-on-one situations, although there were hints of vision in the final third.