Arsenal clashed heads with Sheffield United at the Bramall Lane earlier tonight hoping to continue their push up the Premier League table. The Gunners made a slow start to the game as they failed to test the Blades keeper in the first quarter of the contest. To the surprise of many, Chris Wilder’s men took the lead at the half-hour mark when Lys Mousset scored from close range. The home side defended valiantly and managed to take a narrow one-goal into the half-time break.
The Gunners began to dominate more in the second half, but they were denied by some resolute Sheffield defending. Unai Emery’s side ran out of ideas in the end as the encounter ended with the Gunners suffering a 1-0 defeat on the road.
Let’s take a look at how each Arsenal player performed during the contest against the Blades.
GK: Bernd Leno – 5/10
The Gunners goalie slowed the tempo down with his ball-distribution and struggled to be a commanding presence inside his own penalty area. He couldn’t do much to prevent Mousset’s goal in the 30th minute.
RB: Calum Chambers – 6/10
He was defensively sound and made a few vital clearances for his side. However, he failed to make any meaningful chances going forward.
CB: Sokratis Papastathopoulos – 4.5/10
The Greek defensive ace struggled to cope with Mousset’s runs and put in a lacklustre display at the heart of the Arsenal backline.
CB: David Luiz – 5/10
The Brazilian centre-back had some nervy moments at the back. It was another disjointed performance from him tonight.
LB: Sead Kolasinac – 5/10
The Arsenal left-back was defensively vulnerable, but he whipped in a couple of inviting crosses into the Sheffield penalty box. He needs to improve soon or else risk losing his first-team place in the coming weeks.
CM: Matteo Guendouzi – 4.5/10
The youngster was energetic and covered a lot of ground in midfield as usual. However, he was not creative enough with his passes and was also at fault for not tracking his runner in the lead-up to Mousset’s goal.
CM: Granit Xhaka – 4/10
The Swiss international was a lackadaisical presence in Emery’s midfield and failed to protect the back four when the Blades looked threatening on the counter.
RM: Nicolas Pepe – 6/10
The Ivorian prospect looked lively at times but choked when the spotlight was on him in the final third. However, it was probably one of his better displays in an Arsenal shirt.
CAM: Joe Willock – 4/10
Emery chose to play him in a more advanced role tonight, but it backfired as Willock was unable to orchestrate any goal-scoring opportunities during the clash.
LM: Bukayo Saka – 5.5/10
The Gunners starlet got booked for diving. However, he was direct with his runs and was Emery’s best weapon going forward.
ST: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – 4/10
The Gabonese striker hardly got any clear cut chances to find the back of the net. Overall, it was a frustrating outing for him.
CAM: Dani Ceballos – 6/10
The one who immediately started pulling strings after coming on. It was definitely a mistake from Emery to leave him out of the starting lineup. He was clever in dropping deep and delivering the passes forward. On another night, he would have had a goal.
ST: Alexandre Lacazette – 5/10
The French centre-forward got into some dangerous positions, but his first touches were a bit rusty tonight.
ST: Gabriel Martinelli – 5/10
The Arsenal whizkid didn’t add much to the game.
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