Despite an impressive run under new boss Unai Emery, Arsenal are struggling to make it to the ‘top four’ of Premier League. They have multiple injury woes and the gaffer, therefore, opted to field a much-changed lineup in their third round FA Cup fixture against Blackpool at Bloomfield Road. Yet the Gunners ensured a comfortable 3-0 triumph over the League One outfit and knocked them out from yet another domestic cup contest after November’s EFL Cup Round of 16 tie.
Below are the Arsenal players rated in their dominant win against Blackpool.
Petr Cech: 7.5
Made an excellent stop in the early minutes to deny Armand Gnanduillet. Made a few routine saves as the hosts kept the custodian busy exposing the frailty in the Gunners’ defence.
Carl Jenkinson: 7
Made a rare start in his usual right-back role. Was instrumental down the flank and played his part in the build-up to Willock’s second goal within the first half.
Stephen Lichtsteiner: 6
Played in a makeshift central defensive role and often looked vulnerable against the likes of Gnanduillet and Nathan Delfouneso. The Tangerines were let down by their poor conversion traits which refrained them from scripting a comeback despite some courageous football.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos: 6.5
Sokratis, too, had some nervy occasions but offered some rigidity at the back which often looked vulnerable against the Lancashire-based outfit.
Sead Kolasinac: 7.5
Had a strong presence down the left with timely runs, dribbles and crosses from the wide areas. Won a number of duels and was spot on while going for tackles. His evening came to an end when teenager Zech Medley was brought in the closing minutes of the game.
Mohamed Elneny: 7
His passing was exquisite throughout and combated well in the middle of the park to hold possession. Needs to work on his shooting skills. Also lost a few duels which could have troubled the Gunners against the run of play.
Aaron Ramsey: 8
His days are numbered at Arsenal, but the Welshman delivered yet another stellar performance with relentless creative moves from midfield. Played his part in their first and third goals and orchestrated the tempo from a slightly deeper role.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles: 7.5
The in-form youngster worked tirelessly and covered a lot of ground despite being deployed down the right flank initially. Combined well with his teammates and created enough chances upfront for the attackers.
Joe Willock: 8.5
The teenager scored a brace in the first half showcasing his great goal-poaching instinct. Could have had his hat-trick but saw his second-half strike denied by the linesman due to offside.
Alex Iwobi: 8
Iwobi was excellent once again as he not only played his part in the build-up of Willock’s second but also found the net in the closing minutes from a close range. Was replaced by youngster Bukayo Saka at the very end of the game.
Eddie Nketiah: 6
The youngster could have had a hat-trick in the first half but missed some glorious opportunities. Impressed with his runs and sense of positioning before being replaced by Alexandre Lacazette around the hour mark.
Alexandre Lacazette: 6
Came in place of Nketiah. Played the final half an hour but did not create anything significant in those minutes.
Zech Medley: NA
Played too little to warrant a rating.
Bukayo Saka: NA
Played too little to warrant a rating.
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