A North London derby in front of the highest attendance in a Premier League fixture ever recorded (over 83,000) ended 1-0 to Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley. The match started on even grounds with both teams looking sharp in the opening half.
The Spurs dominated possession right from the start and Arsene Wenger’s men had to keep up with the opposition defensively. The first half was well contested with Arsenal hitting the hosts on the counter on a few occasions while holding their shape quite well in their own half of the pitch.
But the second half turned out to be a completely different story. Arsenal lost their defensive shape and this allowed Mauricio Pochettino’s men a plethora of open chances on goal. Christian Eriksen’s appetizing cross in between Koscielny and Mustafi was struck wide by Harry Kane.
He did not miss the second opportunity as Ben Davies drifted in from the left and lobbed in a scrumptious ball inside the penalty box. Kane was already towering over Laurent Koscielny with an early jump and seamlessly headed the ball into the back of the net completely away from Petr Cech.
The stadium erupted and the 1 goal could have turned into 4 or 5 over the remainder of the 90 minutes. Wenger’s side got completely caught out of pace as the Spurs kept on attacking with multitudinous open chances on goal. If it was not for the Arsenal goalkeeper and Tottenham’s inefficiency, Wenger would have had to go home with an embarrassing loss.
But the one goal meant the visitors were still in the game and it easily could have cost Tottenham as Lacazette found himself two clear chances to equalize in the late stages. However, the last ditched efforts were not enough to beat the clear winners – Tottenham as Arsenal drop 7 points below them in the points table.
Arsenal Player Ratings :
Petr Cech – 8/10
Saved his side from a humiliating defeat. His reactions were outstanding against every single one of Tottenham’s 19 attempts on goal. Arsenal’s best player on the pitch tonight.
Laurent Koscielny – 4/10
An absolute horrific display by the Frenchman as he got outdone by Kane on numerous occasions. His marking was completely off.
Shkodran Mustafi – 5/10
He struggled to connect with Koscielny and got caught out himself but still put in a decent shift. Was aggressive with his tackled which paid off on some occasions and cost him in some.
Hector Bellerin – 6/10
A tireless runner on the right flank as he found himself in acres of space in the Tottenham half. Delivered a few good balls and did well to keep out Son and Davies.
Nacho Monreal – 6/10
He did the needful and did not allow Trippier an inch of space from the left.
Granit Xhaka – 6/10
He was solid today and was one of the better players in the midfield. Much better distribution.
Mohamed Elneny – 6/10
His defensive responsibilities could not be faulted.
Mesut Ozil – 5/10
The German did well to hold onto the ball but could not really make a mark. Most of his creative efforts did not find Aubameyang.
Jack Wilshere – 7/10
He played an offensive role today and picked up the creative slack. Got into the little pockets of space and created to open chances for Aubameyang and Welbeck.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan – 4/10
Not only was he completely off his game today, a lack of energy was really frustrating to watch for the Arsenal faithful. He gave away possession majority of the times and ended up ruining the counter attacks.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – 5/10
He got caught offside a couple of times trying to run into open spaces but ended up with no clear opportunities. Cannot be faulted much due to a lack of deliveries.
Alex Iwobi – 3/10
Came on to infuse some energy but did quite the opposite. Gave possession away and slacked off defensively.
Alexandre Lacazette – 3/10
Frustrating display from the Frenchman. Very lazy to get into position and cost his side by getting caught offside. Had two clear chances in the dying minutes but could not convert.
Danny Welbeck – NA
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