Alfie’s Review on Arsenal’s monumental defeat to Crystal Palace

Review and ratings FT: ARSENAL 2-3 PALACE by Alfie

An abysmal result in a game we were expected to win in our difficult run in. Whilst Palace are certainly a good side with an exceptional away record, with their strong defensive unit and lethal counter-attacking style suiting their travels, there is no doubt that this can be seen as a monumental missed opportunity to cement our place in the top 4.

The starting 11 raised eyebrows, with Emery opting to rest certain players for Wednesday, in what appeared a more difficult game at Wolves. This certainly had an effect as our midfield in particular struggled to impose themselves in the first half. Elneny was insistent on playing it sideways and backwards and Guendouzi continuously lost the ball. Jenkinson showed how one dimensional he is with his own backwards passing and this lack of ability to progress the play in the first period rubbed off on our 3 centre-backs, who appeared to have little confidence in feeding the ball to our midfield. This left a large onus on Ozil dropping deep to create, where he’s often ineffective, and Kolasinac being constantly fed the ball with little output. We missed Ramsey’s energy and runs from deep, Xhaka’s expansive passing, and Monreal’s ability to win the ball high up the pitch when moves break down (which starts many of our attacks).

The introduction of Iwobi and Maitland-Niles gave us a renewed threat down both flanks, with both looking bright and this was reflected in our strong start to the second half. We got the equaliser and continued to press with more fluidity and intensity. However, this good work was completely diminished by Mustafi’s moment of defensive madness ?. The third goal included more sloppy defending and although the Aubameyang goal created a late push of momentum, the Mustafi unexplainable error was ultimately the turning point in a match which we had looked like we would go onto win. We can still make top 4 but it’s going to be far more difficult now.


1️⃣9️⃣ Leno 8

2️⃣0️⃣ Mustafi 3

0️⃣6️⃣ Koscielny 6

2️⃣7️⃣ Mavropanos 6

2️⃣5️⃣ Jenkinson 5

0️⃣4️⃣ Elneny 4

2️⃣9️⃣ Guendouzi 5

3️⃣1️⃣ Kolasinac 5

1️⃣0️⃣ Ozil 6

1️⃣4️⃣ Aubameyang 6

0️⃣9️⃣ Lacazette 6 –


1️⃣7️⃣ Iwobi 7

1️⃣5️⃣ Maitland-Niles 7

1️⃣1️⃣ Torreira 6 –

Tell me your thoughts below and if you don’t understand some of my ratings, ask below and I’ll give some justification


  1. JJPawn says:

    You forgot the rating for the coach. Blaming players over poor team selection makes no sense.
    The person missing is Ramsay playing box to box. Oh dear, so Ramsay is being let go, what is Emery thinking? Arsenal have been lucky with ManU and Chelsea imploding. If we do not make the top four after what is happening with United and Chelsea, then the Emery has to go.

  2. GunnerJack says:

    You mention Elneny and Jenks passing the ball backwards but no one passes the ball back more than Kolasinac. This is because he knows he is totally incapable of beating a man so he is terrified of receiving the ball if there is an opposition player anywhere near him. This results in his non-stop backwards and sideways passes with absolutely zero attempts to take the ball forward. The ONLY time he is of any use whatsoever is when he is somewhere near the corner flag and he can then receive the ball and immediately blast it in the rough direction of the penalty area, hoping it strikes an opposition player and goes for a corner. Otherwise he is pathetic and how you gave him 5 is a mystery to me.

    Add him to the list of no-hopers along with Elneny, Jenks, Mustafi, Lichtsteiner, Mkhitaryan and Welbeck. To my mind none of them should wear an Arsenal shirt ever again.

    1. waal2waal says:

      sorry Gunnerjack but “terrified” and “pathetic” are not superlatives i’d use for saed kolasinac our tank on the flank. he’s of a robust character the type of rough-neck that commands respect which we needed and not the kind of aunt sally that will let the opposition walk all over him. You should count him among the much needed hard men we need in an arsenal shirt – he will come good imo

      1. GunnerJack says:

        Hi W2W. Here is a copy of a post I did earlier which I hope explains things:
        Kola is panic stricken if he receives the ball with an opposition player anywhere near him and so passes it back or sideways every time. He only LOOKS like he’s a hard man and so has fooled many people. In actuality he’s been proven to be a complete chicken heart.
        (By contrast Rob Holding does not LOOK like a hard man, but give him a tough attacker to deal with and he’s your man.)
        Lesson to be learnt – don’t go by looks! Go by performance!
        BTW please have a pad and pencil ready if Kola is picked for the next match(es). If the ball is passed to him WITH AN OPPONENT ANYWHERE NEAR HIM please quickly jot down a: B=Backpass, S=Sideways pass and F if he makes any type of forward move. Look at your pad after the match and you will see approx 8 x Bs and 4 x Ss for every F. Just give it a try. The guy is useless.

        1. Elton Rono says:

          Very true! We need a new lb. Someone like Tierney or Digne…Dont we have any academy players who can do better??? Look at Foden! 19 years and you can see a lot in him

  3. Sue says:

    Pretty generous Alfie, I’d have given lower, especially for that donkey, Mustafi!! A few others would have received lower too… how much backwards & sideways passing did we witness?? It was horrible!
    This game is definitely one to forget & now we must think about Wolves… ?

  4. I hate Mustafi says:

    I hate Mustafi

  5. waal2waal says:

    some you win some you lose…

    Let’s get behind Emery – simple as..

    were it not for injuries or suspensions

    to bellerin, holding, sokratis, monreal and wllbeck

    we’d probably be 3rd (already)

    1. GunnerJack says:

      As we have 6 or 7 no-hopers in our squad I am amazed UE has done as well as he has.

      1. GunnerJack says:

        . . . but I still think he would do even better by playing his best players FIRST and subbing them after we are leading. At the moment he often plays a nondescript team to start with and then brings on the good guys only when we are in trouble! Totally the wrong way round for me.

  6. benex says:

    though emery does mk mistake in his seletion, but we didnt lost bcus of d mistake, he has corrected d mistake early in the 2nd half, we do win many matches after we r down in d 1st half, we are back after those subs, but dat clown mustafi cost us 3pts.

  7. Elton Rono says:

    This is my first time posting on this site. I enjoy reading this articles and comments and I think this site is the best for arsenal fan… straight to it, we really played poorly against palace. It was a lacklustre performance showing bad so players are!! Mustafi tops the bunch! A very poor defender, no sense of positioning and has a lot of mistakes in him. At this point I now realise how Mertasacker was a really nice defender even without pace.. He should be shown the door immediately!!
    Jenkinson and Elneny- I wont talk much about this bunch as we all know they are poor. I think Elneny tried a little bit better compared to his midfield patner but is not arsenals quality…
    Iwobi- What a rubbish player!! I think even Welbeck offers much more than this guy. Absolutely clueless when in the oppositions half and not to saying that he does much defensively!!
    Guendouzi- Many may not agree with ne but I think Guendouzi is garbage! He might be young, yes! But what is he really good at?? I can only think about passing the ball across the field and running around all game!!! He cant create a single chance, always side and back passes!! slows our game to much!!! Cannot score!! he cant shoot!!cant intercept. He’s just a poor midfielder. Look at Ndombele or De Jong!! Those are great young midfield options …
    Ozil- He played well but only turns up in home matches and his wages would be better spent elsewhere!!

  8. things are changing says:

    I am trying to stay positive and support the manager without question this season. He has outperformed any reasonable expectations IMO. However, it has been hard not to question team selection once I saw the team sheets for the Everton game and this weekend. But as long as the manager has not thrown away the top 4 finish he should be given a break. Even if
    he seems to make things harder than they should be.

  9. Joey says:

    IMO. I think the team sheet was got wrong. I wouldn’t bring Elneny close to my first team not even if I’m playing Shamrock at this stage of the competition, and considering what is at stake (Top 4 or Europa) we can lose it all, gain either or get it all and trust me, You don’t want to end a season with the first option after going this close with a shoe string budget given to a new manager in a new and much more difficult league. However, we were able to get it going just at the best time you can think of before the king of Mistakes, mustafi struck again, that even discouraged the fans not to talk of the players who had given a lot to get that goal against a resilient Palace side. I don’t know how mustafi looks at himself, I struggle to think it is that hard to improve considering he’s been playing here for two years and has had a spell in Spain, France and Germany.. If I could meet mustafi, I wouldn’t go rash on him, I’d just ask him how he looks at himself when he wakes up in the morning knowing that people are not surprised of his high profile errors. It will be a win for Both he and football should he hang his boots because we are tired of seeing his face and I’m sure he too should be tired of his frequent errors.. Football will be a better place without him. As for Jerkinson, I’m sure he knows this season is his last. For iwobi, I think he’s been decent considering he’s the only winger we have, Guendouzi could be Elneny-esque or xhaka-esque as well. He just needs to make up his mind and be one. Now we focus on Wolves. I have the feeling we will beat them 0-2. I’m positive. I’m positive Wednesday ManCity win, Arsenal win.. COYG

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