Full Arsenal Player Ratings For The Manchester City Game

Arsenal lost 2-0 to Manchester City in the opening weekend of the new Premier League season. Here are the full player ratings for the match below:

1. Petr Cech: 8/10

The new captain gave a commanding performance and made 3 important saves in the opening 15 minutes, when Manchester City are irresistible. Was vocal to the players in front of him but with a make-shift back four he had a tough task.

Couldn’t do anything with either goal, both of which were well crafted by Manchester City as they ran our defensive line ragged.

2. Hector Bellerin: 7/10

Supported the attack well whenever we did manage to get forward and probably had our best chance when Maitland-Niles played a sweeping ball across from the left and Bellerin did well to mug off Mendy and smash in a shot from close range. Once of those chances which you hoped went towards the far corner but ended up going straight at the keeper.

Will be interesting to see how much competition Stephan Lichtsteiner can give him this season.

20. Shkodran Mustafi: 7/10

Usually a liability but put in a decent performance today. Not many defenders will cope with the Manchester City attack but was well organise alongside new signing Sokratis and made a couple of important tackles.

Central defensive is a position we’re a bit light so Arsenal need him to have a consistent season.

5. Sokratis Papastathopoulos: 6/10

A tough introduction into Premier League life but he will get better. Tough to really evaluate his performance as he was run ragged like most of the team at times but didn’t seem out of place.

15. Ainsley Maitland-Niles: 6/10

Was given the run around from Riyad Mahrez and Kyle Walker for the first half an hour before going off injured. Despite that, was full of running and never gave up, which is all you can ask for from a central midfielder asked to play as a full back.

34. Granit Xhaka: 5/10

Didn’t impose himself on the game and went missing for large parts of it. He is a player who doesn’t seem to know what his responsibilities are and it shows. Is he a ball winning midfielder or a ball playing one? Well he did neither and was vastly overshadowed by his considerably younger counterpart. Should be the one to make way once Lucas Torreira is fully fit but have a sneaky suspicion he won’t.

29. Matteo Guendouzi: 8/10

Considering his experience (or lack thereof) he put in a really excellent performance in this afternoon. He was composed, committed and won more tackles in central midfield than I’ve seen over the last few seasons. Clearly once Lucas Torreira is fully fit then he will be a guaranteed started but on this evidence Guendouzi will be the man to partner him in midfield, not Granit Xhaka.

7. Henrikh Mkhitaryan: 6/10

Has put in better performances in an Arsenal shirt and was disappointing today. Perhaps asked to play a role he’s not used to, having to track back on the left hand side – and was unable to give the young Ashley Maitland-Niles adequate cover on that side. Although the caveat being most teams would struggle against Kyle Walker and Riyad Marhez / Bernado Silva.

10. Mesut Özil: 4/10

Did Özil have a late night? His passing was off, his vision was off, and his all round performance was off. Seemed to lack concentration and it’s hard to believe he is (by far) our highest paid player. People sometimes lay into Özil for his performances but he’s a superstar signing on superstar wages – he’s treated like a World Class player but doesn’t perform like one.

Badly mis-kicked a golden opportunity when Lichtsteiner cut back from the left, badly mis-controlled a ball when Ederson kicked it out to him (which he should have scored from) and to cap it all he got in the way (and got caught offside) when he should have left it and let the onside Lacazette go through on goal.

A performance which stank out the entire stadium.

8. Aaron Ramsey: 5/10

Not convincing at all and struggled to impose himself on the game. Definitely had the contract situation hanging over his head and you could tell from his performance. Was in the Number 10 role which was strange considering Mesut Özil is better suited to that position so it’s unclear if Unai Emery is appeasing him so he’ll sign a new deal?

14. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: 6/10

Isolated up front but should have done better with the opportunities he had. The lack of service from Özil, Ramsey and Mkhitaryan didn’t help but with his pace and movement should have given Manchester City a few more problems.

Substitutes:

12. Stephan Lichtsteiner: 7/10
Came on for Maitland-Niles on 35 minutes

Did what was asked of him and looked like a solid player who Arsenal will need over the coming season. Wasn’t afraid to get involved and more importantly get in Manchester City’s faces, which is something we lack considering we’re far too much of a soft touch.

Look forward to him playing more although right back isn’t a position we’re struggle for numbers unfortunately, it’s the other side.

9. Alexandre Lacazette: 7/10
Came on for Ramsey on 54 minutes

Looked lively when he came on and more of a goal threat than Aubameyang. Had a couple of decent half chances which if taken, could have changed the game. Emery will certainly have something to think about come the Chelsea game and he has definitely put himself in the frame to start that match. Played like he has a point to prove.

11. Lucas Torreira: 6/10
Came on for Xhaka on 70 minutes

Did well for his 20 minute cameo and looks a tidy player. Hard to really evaluate his impact considering the number of minutes we played but the sooner he can start instead of Granit Xhaka, the better.

Many Positives For Unai Emery But Mesut Özil Needs To Be Sold!

Arsenal lost 2-0 in their opening game of the 2018/2019 season and although we were outplayed at times, the future looks positive.

The young Frenchman, Matteo Guendouzi, looked excellent in central midfield and although he was a bit rash at times, overall he was fantastic – making important tackles, getting around the pitch and putting in a real team performance.

Lucas Torreira looked good once he came on to replace Granit Xhaka, and when introduced Stephen Lichtsteiner looked like a handy addition as well.

Manchester City where as you would expect – a team with seasons under their belt with an experienced manager, who were clear winners in the Premier League last year.

And Arsenal, were also where you would expect – a team in transition after a seismic change this summer.

There were some positives we can build on, but also a few negatives.

Mesut Özil was playing as if he was asleep and if he was more alert we could have scored a couple of goals – the first opportunity went begging after his mis-control went straight into the hands of Ederson and the second after he got in the way and got penalised for being offside when Lacazette was clean through.

And then there was the chance he had from a Lichtsteiner cut back, which he. managed to miss completely and fall over in the process.

With Aaron Ramsey in the team, the side doesn’t look balanced with Özil in the team and if you ask me which one should make way, it has to be the German (former) international.

Positives For Unai Emery But Mesut Özil Needs To Be Dropped!

Arsenal lost 2-0 in their opening game of the 2018/2019 season and although we were outplayed at times, the future looks positive.

The young Frenchman, Matteo Guendouzi, looked excellent in central midfield and although he was a bit rash at times, overall he was fantastic – making important tackles, getting around the pitch and putting in a real team performance.

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What Do Mesut Özil’s Germany Statements Mean For Arsenal?

The big news today regarding Arsenal was the lengthy statement from Arsenal’s new number 10, Mesut Özil, in regards to the Germany national team, and how he has been treated since his photograph with Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoga at an event in London back in May.

I have to say after reading Mesut Özil’s statements, I didn’t realise the scale of the issue until today. I knew from various Arsenal sources that the photograph was causing problems in Germany but not to the extend of personal threats against him and his family.

Özil’s statements in full can be found on his Facebook and Instagram pages:

Screen Shot 2018-07-22 at 20.47.58

He talks about the disgraceful treatment he’s had and essentially the racist attacks he’s had to endure.

The abuse he’s been receiving is clearly unacceptable and a player who (well, I thought) was loved by Germany has had to retire at the age of 29 which is still young in todays game.

My thoughts on this? Well I don’t know enough about it all really. From the skim reading of the comments on social media the whole thing has clearly divided opinion between Germans, Turks and everyone representing in the left and right wing political parties. Politically, I have no idea if it was right or wrong because I don’t know enough about what the Turkish president is all about.

And from a footballing perspective, it’s hard to make a call. Should footballers get involved in politics? It’s certainly a new one as Özil’s case is about Germany and Turkey, so there is obviously conflict there. In England, we’ve seen the England squads line up for a photo opportunity with whoever was Prime Minister at the time and no-one batted an eye-lid, and although thats obviously in a different context it’s the only thing we can compare it to.

I don’t know. In a world where (some) footballers live for social media, the fact this photo happened doesn’t surprise me, but what does surprise me a little is that footballers have such large entourages surrounding them that someone (who certainly knows more about German politics that I do) didn’t tell Özil it might not be the best idea.

For Arsenal fans, you’re left wondering where this leaves us really. He no longer plays for the German national team and as a man who divides the Arsenal support, he will be under the limelight even more so now.

From the social media posts Arsenal send out of Mesut Özil and related topics, there is clearly a large Germany and Muslim fanbase who follow Özil and his performances at Arsenal. Will this be intensified further? Or will Arsenal fans rally round and support the young German?

The next few weeks will be interesting now as the focus was on Özil and the German national side, but now it will be firmly on Arsenal Football Club.

Do Arsenal Need Mesut Özil? Should They Sell Him?

Exciting times are ahead for Arsenal – we’ve got a new manager in Unai Emery which is a seismic change after the reign of Arsene Wenger and we’ve also made a lot of signings to boot, with the signings of Stephan Lichtsteiner, Bernd Leno, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Lucas Torreira and Mattéo Guendouzi who will all add strength and depth to the squad.

With all the new faces coming in, we’ve only really lost 3 players, and even then two of them hardly featured last season. Per Mertesacker has moved into a coaching role at Arsenal, and Santi Cazorla was victim of a horrific injury / surgery scare and has gone back to Spain. Jack Wilshere to West Ham on a free is the only real departure of note so at the moment at least, the squad is a bit heavy on numbers.

So the question is after spending around £67 million on new arrivals, who are we going to see leave? Jack Wilshere has gone for nothing (one of the many failings of the Arsene regime) but the fact is some players will need to be moved on. And a big consideration is how much we can recoup.

And that’s why Mesut Özil’s name pops up. Is he an Unai Emery player? From my limited knowledge of his tactics and style of play with Sevilla and PSG, I had the impression he liked teams that pressed with intensity and purpose, and sadly Özil is a luxury player in that regard.

We have Lacazette and Aubameyang who look like they might start together, and the bottom line is that Mkhitaryan is a player with Özil’s vision and passing, but also runs for the team and has more pace and has a better team work ethic – so in that sense Özil is almost surplus to requirements.

He is also a player who would still command a decent price, so would make the Arsenal accountants happy.

So what are your thoughts? Should we cut Mesut Özil loose and get some money back? Or do you think he has a place in this Arsenal team and would be a key to any future success?

Leave your thoughts in the comments section below!