Manchester City v Arsenal
Kick off: December 14, 2013 12:45 PM BST
A second defeat for the Gunners in a week that coincided with Friday the 13th. It was a terrible performance from the Premiership leaders as they conceded more goals at the Etihad than they had had in the previous seven domestic trips. Here are the player ratings from today’s horror-game.
Wojciech Szczesny | 5.5: He made one save and two clearances. He didn’t get enough protection from his defenders and can’t be blamed for the goals, but he did concede six.
Bacary Sagna | 5.5: He earned a slightly better mark thanks to some work up front that included an assist for Mertesacker’s goal. He was however part of the duo that hadn’t cleared convincingly during the attack from which Negredo scored.
Laurent Koscielny | 5.5: Our defense really fell apart from the moment he got injured (hopefully it’s not a long-term injury) but, truth to be told, he lost both duels that led to goals we had conceded.
Per Mertesacker | 5.5: He gets a slightly better mark thanks to the goal he scored. It wasn’t his best performance in terms of organizing the defence but he didn’t have the best associates either.
Nacho Monreal | 3.0: His by far worst performance at Arsenal and probably in his entire career. He was easily beaten on every occasion and caught out off position regularly. I like Nacho but this kind of performances can leave scars on one’s self-confidence. He was ruled offside wrongly in a promising situation in the first half.
Mathieu Flamini | 5.5: He was out-numbered in the middle of the park as Ramsey went forward too much. The imperious Yaya Toure simply brushed our whole midfield aside.
Aaron Ramsey | 6.0: He started our attack for the first goal and assisted Walcott for the second but he neglected his defensive tasks.
Mesut Özil | 5.5: Arsenal are still on the top and Özil is still leading the league when it comes to assists thanks to the one he made today for Walcott’s first equalizer but it wasn’t his best performance either. He was anonymous for a large part of the match and it was his poor pass to Flamini that led to City’s third.
Jack Wilshere | 4.5: Poor performance from Jack and his shameful gesture wasn’t the right move either. He was too nervous due to poor refereeing and that resulted with number of mistakes. One of those caused the fifth goal for the City. Had one good shot saved by Pantilimon.
Theo Walcott | 8.0: If there was a bright spot in this heavy defeat, it was Walcott’s brace. Our top scorer from last season has finally opened his account in the Premiership and his second goal was Henry-sque. He deserved a hat-trick but Pantilimon denied him twice. Welcome back Theo!
Olivier Giroud | 4.5: He was ruled offside and his goal should have stood to make it 4:3 but that shouldn’t mask the fact Giroud gave a below-par performance. The way he acted with the ball in the promising situation on the right side of the penalty box, when he was totally alone with nobody around him, suggests perhaps Wenger should listen to those voices that have been calling for a purchase of a world-class striker in January. Furthermore, Giroud didn’t have the best defensive performance for corners either.
Thomas Vermaelen | 5.0: He wasn’t at fault for any of the four goals we conceded after Vermaelen had replaced Koscielny but the shape of our defense was nowhere to be seen.
Nicklas Bendtner | 6.0: His goal was correctly ruled out for offside. He made a wonderful clip for Walcott’s one-on-one with Pantilimon but the Romanian goalkeeper saved well.
Serge Gnabry | 4.5: He had given the ball away before Milner earned a penalty.