Football Features

“A playmaker with the magic eye” – Full player ratings as Arsenal leave it late to beat West Ham

By Muhammad Butt

Published: 22:18, 19 September 2020 | Updated: 9:48, 30 March 2021

In a tight and tense night of football, Arsenal left it late to beat West Ham in the Premier League.

The win makes it two consecutive victories for the Gunners and two straight defeats for the Irons as Mikel Arteta beat his former manager.

Here’s how the players rated at the Emirates:

Arsenal

Bernd Leno – 6 – Solid for an hour and confident sweeping well outside his box, but a couple of ropey moments when coming to collect crosses. Helpless on the West Ham goal.

Rob Holding – 7 – Generally solid.

Gabriel – 6 – An impressive display (he made a team-high 5 clearances) from Arsenal’s new boy, but twice lucky to avoid giving away a penalty, especially on a quite clear (but still accidental) handball.

Sead Kolasinac – 4 – A late replacement for the injured Tierney and it showed. Poor defending for West Ham’s goal as he was failed to close Fredricks and was routinely got at all night.

Hector Bellerin – 6 – Ran hard up and down the touchline but little production.

Dani Ceballos – 8 – The best player on the park and the only Arsenal player who really looked to push the tempo to try and create anything. An impressive display and a great run late saw him bag assist to give Arsenal the lead and then a superb block in stoppage time helped the Gunners preserve it.

Granit Xhaka – 7 – Most touches (130), most passes (118) and more passes in West Ham’s half (68) than any West Ham player managed in total (59). Xhaka was passing fluidly but it was all just a little too safe.

Bukayo Saka – 8 – Two precognitive pre-assists punctuated an off-night for the Gunners. His pass to Aubameyang for the opener was delightful but the way he jabbed it through to Ceballos for the winner was pure poetry. A playmaker with the magic eye.

Willian – 6 – Underwhelming.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – 6 – Quiet first-half punctuated by a searing run and wonderfully weighted cross for Arsenal’s goal.

Alexandre Lacazette – 7 – A thumping header to give Arsenal the lead. Looked bright early but ended up being wasteful.

Substitutes:

Nicolas Pepe (for Willian 64′) – 4 – Came on for the underwhelming Willian and was somehow worse. £72 million? You’re having a laugh!

Eddie Nketiah (for Lacazette 77′) – 7 – In the right place at the right time to win the game for Arsenal. Super sub.

David Luie (for Saka 89′) – n/a – Came on late.

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West Ham

Lukasz Fabianski – 7 – A competent display from Fabianski. Helpless on both Arsenal goals.

Issa Diop – 5 – An impressive display for the most part, but then both goals came down his flank.

Angelo Ogbonna – 7 – Strong at the back, Ogbonna notched a game-high 7 clearances but it wasn’t enough.

Aaron Cresswell – 7 – Solid. Most touches and passes for West Ham as the Irons tries to find goals.

Ryan Fredricks – 7 – A combative display. A superb run and cross for Antonio’s equaliser the highlight.

Declan Rice – 6 – Not bad, just outplayed by the excellence of Arsenal’s midfield. Couldn’t disrupt them.

Tomas Soucek – 7 – Occasionally posed a problem to Arsenal as an aerial target (contesting 11 aerial duels) but was light in actual midfield.

Arthur Masuaku – 7 – An impressive performance including one sensational, searing cross in the second-half.

Jarrod Bowen – 7 – Constantly drove at the Arsenal defence. Picked poor moments to shoot as most of his efforts were blocked (3) but he pressed well and made the joint-most tackles for the Irons.

Pablo Fornals – 5 – Disappointing.

Michail Antonio – 7 – Continued his excellent 2020 by equalising for West Ham. Great run and sliding finish to pull West Ham level but he really should have scored again from a delightful Masuaku cross.

Substitutes:

Andriy Yarmolenko (for Bowen 83′) – 5 – Had no impact on the game.

Sebastien Haller (for Fornals 88′) – 5 – Could have scored an equaliser but for a late block.

Felipe Anderson (for Masuaku 90′) – n/a – Came on late.

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