Arsenal v Newcastle
Kick off: December 13th, 2014 1730 GMT
A massive victory for the injury-depleted Gunners who achieved their second 4:1-victory this week. It was an energetic and lively performance that could have ended with even more goals in the visitors’ net. Here are the ratings from today’s superb victory.
Wojciech Szczesny | 7.5: Was let down by his defenders on the set-piece from which we conceded so he didn’t keep a clean sheet. However, it was his excellent double save in the first half after Gouffran’s and Cisse’s respective attempts that saved our lead. Showed safe hands on the rare occasions when he was called upon.
Hector Bellerin | 8.5: We have a real gem in this 19-year-old Spaniard! He made a beautiful interception to start the move for our first goal and created Giroud’s second (and our third goal) of the game. Made a lot of blocks to deny crosses from the left Newcastle wing. A few sloppy moments with the ball and failure to defend the free-kick well that led to Newcastle goal can’t deny the fact we’ll have a lot of exciting years with Bellerin in the team.
Mathieu Debuchy | 7.5: It’s not easy to be a make-shift central defender but the Frenchman did really well against his former team-mates. He made an important sliding tackle in the last minutes when the score-line was still 3:1 to deny an opportunity for Newcastle to claw back.
Per Mertesacker | 7.5: Organized our make-shift defence well and was unlucky to be denied by the crossbar in the very beginning.
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Kieran Gibbs | 7.5: Gave away a foul that almost led to an equalizer in the first half but improved as the game went on.
Mathieu Flamini | 7.0: It wasn’t just our defence that was make-shift – our central midfield lacked regular members too. Flamini worked his socks off as usual and made a fine attempt to score but the curling shot didn’t find the net.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain | 7.25: Was sloppy in possession on a few occasions and felt much more comfortable higher up the pitch. Showed a few impressive long passes.
Santi Cazorla | 8.75: The birthday boy gave himself a fine present for the 30th anniversary of his birth – a brace. His first goal of the game was real magic and everything that Santi is as a player while his chip penalty showed how cheeky Santi can be. Was better as the game went on.
Danny Welbeck | 8.0: Was unlucky to be denied a well-taken goal for an non-existent foul. He earned a penalty thanks to his smart run behind the defence and was a real thorn in the visitors’ defence during the whole match. His work-rate was amazing again.
Olivier Giroud | 9.25 (MOTM): If we were only playing Newcastle every week, Thierry Henry would be the second best French striker in Arsenal history. Nevertheless, Giroud has been excellent this term and added a fine brace to his collection. His movement was brilliant, his finishing lethal and the way he scored his second goal of the game was classy.
Alexis Sánchez | 9.0: As usual, the Chilean was a menace to the opponents and never stopped making their life miserable. He created the first goal of the game with a perfect cross for Giroud and fed Cazorla for our second. Another impressive performance from Alexis.
Lukas Podolski | 6.5: Had a dangerous attempt but it went wide.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles | N/A: A great week for the youngster who made his league debut as well.
Francis Coquelin | N/A: Another body in rotation. He’ll do just fine for us in the forthcoming weeks.