Arsenal vs. PSG Match Ratings

Welcome back everyone. Real football was played these past couple of days. The Champions League is still the number one football competition in the world, despite all the complaints lodged against UEFA. When the anthem is played I can only feel calmness and chills all at once. Whoever commissioned Tony Britten to produce the theme song should be given a red rose and a million dollars for that decision alone.

The group stages are usually easy work for Arsenal. Easy in the sense that we know we will enter the next round as the one of the “top two” in the . Arsenal has finished 2nd in the last 5 out 6 years. This is because there are usually 2 other teams in a champions league group that just feed on scraps and hope to qualify for a boring Thursday game of Europa football.

Arsenal has been in groups of death before but this one seems pretty straight forward. Beat the fancy Parisians home and away and you will probably advance on top. The Fancy Parisians actually played some good football or rather, we made them look good. Cavani definitely did his part to make our MOTM look “world class” as Wenger called him. We were definitely lucky to leave Paris with a point.

BY THE WAY, THE SPUDS LOST HAHAHAHAHAH

The Arsenal #2 put together a string of saves throughout the game to make up for conceding in the opening minute.

Osssssspppppinnaaaaa MOTM 9

I would give have given him a 10 if one his passes didn’t lead to another gilt edge chance for the Parisians which he obviously saved with his spider hands. Osssssspppppinnaaaaa is definitely better than most keepers (especially Mignolet) in the Premier League, though he has had some high profile bloopers as well. I am usually calm with him between the sticks though I am calmest with Cech in. He was brilliant on Tuesday and won us a point. He owes Cavani (perennial Arsenal target) a lot of his wages for the shambolic finishing display. He should get some more games, though I would like Cech to have the more important games.

Monreal 6

This was not greatest game from my buddy Monreal. I think he is more than capable as a defender. He did get beat by Aurier (former Gunner target) for the cross that led to the stupid 45 sec goal. He was viewed as the weak link by Unai Emery, maybe justifiably, and had to do a lot of the donkey work alone. He had no help from Iwobi. Seems like I'm just finding excuses for him. Maybe I am.

Mustafi 5

Bad game, Mustafi. He has not figured things out yet. He was in no man's land for the goal and was just all over the place the rest of the 89 minutes. He was lucky we did not lose by a shit ton of goals because we(or rather I) would be cursing his name. Instead I can be more introspective and muse about how good he and the KOS could be if they were on the same wavelength. Again I will state I like him but if he doesn’t pull up his big boy pants soon, I might like Mr Holding a lot better. But who cares who I like, Arsenal is all about who Monsieur Arsene likes.

A poor away performance from the Captain was partly responsible for the shaky defence

Koscielny 6

Bad game Kos. This was a stinker. He can't be blamed too much. I think our tactics were not the greatest and he doesn’t really know Mustafi as partner yet. Then again he could have been more of a captain and shut up shop. Ossssspppppinnnaaa saved him. He now has the latitude to also be introspective and muse over how good he and Mustafi can be.

Coquelin 6

Coq is always good option for a game. Coq does what he can to nip attacks in the bud. His unfortunate present circumstance is that Monsieur Wenger likes to have him play high up the pitch so he can quell opposing attacks before they begin. This is good when it works but it stanks when it doesn’t . The obvious game plan at the beginning was to have him sit behind the defense and then counter the Parisians at their home. The early goal meant that Coq played higher than he should. He had an opportunity to score in the first half but instead opted for a poor pass which ruined a decent goalscoring opportunity. Playing him higher up the pitch results in him encroaching into the space that Ozil and Sanchez typically operate in. Coq will work for some games, but not all. Wenger’s job is to figure out which games those are. Xhaka should have started as he would allowed us to control the game with passing and not put too much pressure on a defense that is too busy musing and just getting to know each other.

Cazorla 6.5

Bad game in the first half. Better game in the second. Sometimes it seems as though Arsenal’s game plan is to make you tired and then outpass you in the second half for a goal. Cazorla is a player that can take control of any game but this time only took control of the second half. He was manhandled by giant midfield of the Parisians but took control in the second because the Parisians were tired after exerting soo much energy in the first. He would have had a better match with Xhaka who would provide another outlet. All fancy passing had to go through Cazorla while Coq just gave the basic (Cleverley-esque) passes. Coq is a key player player but in games where the opposition tactic is to hurry him off the ball, it would be good to have a giant passing robot to help him out in midfield.

Ox 4

Wow! What a player! No touch, poor passing, nothing dribbles but he will always put on that “pity face” when he is being substituted. He must become a bench guy for now

Iwobi struggled to be a creative attacking outlet for the Gunners

Iwobi 6.5

He was not great. He would have got a 7.5 had he scored the winning goal. His touch (something Ox struggles with) for the shot that led to the goal was immaculate. He was arguably non-existent for most of the game though. He played better once Giroud came in. I feel he should keep his place with the Ox moved to the bench for the upcoming games. Iwobi looks like a player than can get stuff done and unfortunately, I can't say the same for Ox.

Ozil 6

Another dreadful game from our boy wonder. Sometimes I wonder why he doesn’t shoot when he has the chance. Not that he had any great chances in this game. I just wonder. His great pass led to Iwobi shot that led to the goal. Like I said before his worse game is still better than most. Though we do need him to kick into high gear soon

Sanchez 7

Frustrating game for the main man. He must not be happy with his new position or he is not happy with the Ox feeding him nothing passes. I would prefer him and Lucas Perez to play together. Iwobi, Lucas Perez and Sanchez, with Ozil, Xhaka and Cazorla behind sounds like the type of team that can’t slice through the opposition. Ramsey could replace any of the above as well. Sanchez is an animal that just likes to be fed in goals. If he is not playing well, it usually an indictment on the whole team.

Subs :

Despite coming on late during the game, the French striker was the first player to hit the showers thanks to his red card

Giroud 5

The Big Ol’ Bastard got a red card because Wenger didn't give him his dream of playing in Paris on a Champions League Night.. He did spark us into life by forcing Sanchez to be in his preferred position. Red card was amusingly stupid though.

Xhaka 6

Did not do much. Might have changed the tempo a bit but really the tempo of the game had been set earlier. Should have started.

Elneny 6

I really really like Elneny. He could have played as well with Cazorla and it would have worked well.