Sunday, July 3, 2022

Xhaka Gets 7.5, Luiz With 5 | Arsenal Players Rated In Their Defeat Against Olympiacos

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Pratyay Maitra
A sports enthusiast in his mid-twenties who reads, breathes, as well as dreams (mostly) about football and attempts to share his views with the fanatics by jotting it down. Prefers to learn through extensive interaction, communication and exploration. So don't be in a quandary and SHOOT.

Arsenal have recovered from a disastrous start and are back in rhythm following an impressive North London derby triumph. The spirit was high within the camp ahead of hosting Olympiacos at the Emirates for the Europa League Round of 16 return leg fixture, however, the Gunners survived a second-half scare and made it through to the quarterfinals on aggregate (3-2) despite losing 1-0 at their own backyard.

Below are the Arsenal players rated in their disappointing defeat against Olympiacos.

Bernd Leno: 6.5

Made one massive save early into the game to deny Youssef El-Arabi who was through on goal. But the Moroccan was spot on early in the second half as his deflected strike handed the visitors a glimmer of hope to script a comeback.

Hector Bellerin: 6.5

The Spaniard had a lively game down the right-hand flank as he kept on making overlapping runs and linking up with Pepe in the attacking third. Got replaced by Calum Chambers with 10 minutes remaining.

David Luiz: 5

Struggled against El-Arabi on a few occasions as his positioning was erroneous. Lost duels dangerously and got beaten with ease before the Moroccan grabbed his goal.

Gabriel: 6.5

Was unlucky as El-Arabi’s effort deflected off him before ending up in the back of the net. Was strong in the air, also made some no-nonsense clearances to avoid uninvited trouble under pressure.

Kieran Tierney: 6.5

The exciting Scotsman looked purposeful with his marauding runs. Should have offered more defensively, particularly against Giorgos Masouras who looked menacing from the flank.

Arsenal star Nicolas Pepe in action against Olympiacos
Football – 2020 / 201 UEFA Europa League – Round 16 – Second Leg – Arsenal vs Olympiakos – Emirates Stadium Oleg Reabciuk of Olympiacos and Nicolas Pepe of Arsenal PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxUK

Mohamed Elneny: 6

Made quite a few recoveries, won back possession and made down the middle runs to operate in the advanced areas. But the Egyptian lacked the creative spark and slowed down the tempo a bit before being replaced by Thomas Partey minutes before the hour mark.

Granit Xhaka: 7.5

Played his part in some build-ups and tried to mix his passes from the middle of the park. Featured as a double pivot and orchestrated the show from the deep-lying role.

Nicolas Pepe: 6.5

Had his moments as he came close to scoring on a couple of occasions. Got dispossessed frequently, also lacked accuracy while attempting dribbles.

Dani Ceballos: 5.5

Started well from the ‘number 10’ role, also altered his position with Smith Rowe to keep Olympiacos on their toes. But his mistake high up the pitch allowed the visitors to break and find the target minutes into the second half. Lacked the work ethics and was taken off to be replaced by Martin Odegaard moments after conceding.

Emile Smith Rowe: 6

The youngster had a bright start with his pace and energetic display in and around the attacking third. However, looked out of ideas with time and was replaced by Gabriel Martinelli late in the match.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: 6

Had an opportunity in the first half, but the free-scoring forward fired it over from a promising position. Did not have many touches and seemed isolated when the Gunners were busy protecting the aggregate. Could not grab one golden opportunity to equalize in the dying minutes of the game.

Arsenal Substitutes Vs Olympiacos

Martin Odegaard: 7

Had an instant impact as he created a host of chances with his speed, flair and composure.

Thomas Partey: 7

Calmed things down in the middle of the park with his work rate and physical presence.

Calum Chambers: NA

Played too little to warrant a rating.

Gabriel Martinelli: NA

Played too little to warrant a rating.

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