Arsenal vs Manchester United
Barclays Premier League
Kick off: February 12, 2014 7.45 PM BST
Normally a draw against United would be considered a decent point, but under the circumstances, we really needed the win, and United were there for the taking. A distinctly average performance from many players, and you got the idea that both teams were trying not to lose rather than going all out for the win. Here are the player ratings:
Wojciech Szczesny | 8.5:(MotM) Was alert to danger in the first half, clearing up after sloppy play in front of him. Also made an unbelievable save in the second half, pushing Van Persie’s point blank header onto the bar. Came out quickly to prevent danger before it appeared on regular occasions.
Bacary Sagna | 7.75: Was solid defensively, and put in a number of fantastic crosses for Giroud.
Per Mertesacker | 7.5: Was decent, but not as solid as he has been. Made some decent clearances and won a lot of vital headers.
Laurent Koscielny | 8.0: Was alert to danger, made a huge amount of clearances, and put in some vital challenges. Almost gave us the lead late on, having a fantastic headed effort cleared off the line.
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Keiran Gibbs | 8.0: Keiran was a huge improvement on Nacho. He offered a lot more both offensively and defensively, which is important when Cazorla is the player in front of him. Put in a couple of fantastic balls late on for Giroud.
Mikel Arteta | 6.0: Gifted Van Persie a chance early on, but was more solid in the second half. I feel he is restricted with Wilshere along side him, severely missing Ramsey.
Jack Wilshere | 6.75: Jack was decent from on offensive standpoint, driving the team forward and trying to link up play. He was caught in possession a few too many times though, and looked like he was exhausted and should have been subbed in the second half.
Mesut Özil | 6.75: Özil was decent today, but again didn’t shine. We were missing the forward runs that he is so good at picking out, and we desperately need some pace if we are to utilize him properly.
Santi Cazorla | 7.0: Was the only one willing to shoot from distance, tested De Gea several times. Was decent, but not instrumental as we know he can be.
Tomas Rosicky | 6.0: Looked up for the game, and willing to contribute in attack and defence,b ut was the cause for many breakdowns in Arsenal attacks. His passing was wayward, and was substituted for Chamberlain late on.
Olivier Giroud | 7.5: A mixed game from the Frenchman. His hold up play was exceptional today, and he dominated Vidic at times. He got into good positions and showed good movement to create chances, his finishing was wayward though, and he had several chances that he really should have put away.
Alex Oxlade Chamberlain | 6.5: Was decent coming on late in the game, but it was clear once he came on that both teams were playing not to lose. Couldn’t impact the game in any real way.