Arsenal player ratings v Bournemouth – Saka gets man of the match

Arsenal player ratings – A good performance from the whole team

It was an overall good performance from the lads last night and the Arsenal player ratings will reflect that.

The first half was definitely better than the second half but I suspect that was because Mikel Arteta told the players not to take too many risks and to slow the game down. Well, hopefully, that was why the performance dropped after half time.

Arsenal Player Ratings

Martinez – 6
Some decent saves but did not look too assured at times.

Saka – 9
Excellent display, great goal and he looked very comfortable down the left. Great game.

Bellerin – 7
Did ok without setting the world alight. His fitness will have benefited from the game.

Sokratis – 7
Was fairly solid but still looked ponderous on occasions.

Mustafi – 8
Was having a great game until his injury. His confidence is clearly growing.

Guendouzi – 8
I thought he had a very good game and ran Saka close for man of the match. He also really wound the home fans up which was a joy to see.

Xhaka – 6
Not at his best and too many passes went haywire.

Willock – 8
Had a very good game, looked very comfortable and was instrumental in both goals.

Pepe – 6
Another disappointing performance which is becoming the norm.

Martinelli – 6
A bit quiet and it cannot be expected that he plays brilliantly every game.

Nketiah – 7
Scored but then sort of drifted a little.


Holding – 5
Needs more game time and hopefully will improve.

Ceballos – 6
Never made an impact but in all fairness, the game was about defence when he came on.

Maitland-Niles – 5
Average score because not on long enough.


  1. Saka, for me… what a goal and had an assist! Guendouzi was brilliant too.. I love how feisty he is…
    Pompey, we’re coming for you!

  2. Personally, I thought Guendouzi was MOTM but I wouldn’t begrudge Saka either!

    A great performance all round from the Gunners, although Bournemouth did make it a little easy for us in the first half. Also looks like Pepe is finding his feet with every game he plays 🙂

    As much as Mustaffi might get the negative headlines normally, I though he also did well last night and hope a speedy recovery for him. I want to like him as a footballer (nothing against him personally). I just wish he could be more consistent and cut out the mistakes. Last night he was solid though.

    Xhaka plays better when not being pressed or harassed. I do wonder what future he will have under MA because we really need a fast thinking creative attacking midfielder.

    Overall, the youngsters did well while a few regulars got a good rest!

    1. u pple should stop criticising xhaka. he is a defensive midfieder. his work is to balance the play out of the defenders. in which he is doing very well. he is not ozil or ceballos who always tries to creat from xhaka positional play and stop the critics..
      mikel arteta wants him and so do most arsenal fans worldwide,he was very instrumental tactically against manchester united,bournemouth,chelsea and crystal palace..

      1. @ john thomas, I didn’t criticise Xhaka. I am simply stating that he not suited to an attacking formation. His style of play is not suited to Arsenal’s attacking style. No doubt MA will want to rectify the issues withing the squad over the coming months and Xhaka has been put into a position which clearly has a knock-on effect on our forwards. That is why the fans got angry with him and he reacted. It is not his fault. It is the previous managers fault for putting him in a bad situation. Everyone could see he was suffering but they hung him out to dry!

      2. John I think people need to actual check Xhaka’s stats from yesterday he played a few poor passes nothing too dangerous as they were not outside our box. People are blinded by their hate of the guy, don’t see anyone mention the number of interceptions he made.

        Granit Xhaka v Bournemouth (A):

        •97 Touches
        •74 Acc Passes (90%)
        •5 Long Balls
        •4 Duels Won
        •4 Clearances
        •1 Blocked Shot
        •1 Interception
        •2 Tackles
        •2-1 Win

        rant over

    1. Am sorry to say, you can leave arsenal if u want..

      The Xhaka we have in the team yesterday was the real balance of the game…

      He is just to relevant…
      All the players were great…
      He really is not Ozil… But he is just too much in his own style

  3. Funny, Martin, because you’re usually quite harsh on Guen but this time I’s say you’re being a little generous. He had a great second half but first half he was, in your own words, a headless chicken. Dude needs to stop bumrushing everyone.

    I was watching Ceballos closely when he came on and I have to say, I thought he was excellent. It’s true that the game had changed and there wasn’t much movement ahead of him so he ended up playing it back fairly often, but his passing was superb. It’s just a shame he’s more of a deep-lying playmaker instinctively so swapping him for Ozil wouldn’t be all that simple. I hope we see more of him.

    1. Well, one thing I have noticed Sean is that no matter what I write there will be some that agree and some that do not. A bit of a thankless task but one that I do enjoy, most of the time.

    2. Guendouzi was excellent last night Sean. His work rate and distance covered was one of the best I have seen this season. Great effort from him!

        1. I know he has been a bit “up ‘n down” this season but even my father in law (who knows little about football) kept saying how impressed he was by him and that “He must own that ball”! 🙂

          I think we all need to remember he is still only very young too Sean..

  4. That’s too low for Dhaka…
    For me, he made Saka to be comfortable going forward…
    Saka hardly came to defend in the match, he had the freedom to play,up.. And that was made possible because Xhaka was solid playing in midfeild and a third central back..

    So I will not agree with u, please add to it…

    Others fine… But for martinelli, he didn’t score then u rate him low…. No na

  5. The stand out players were Nketiah, Saka and Willock. All others put up a commendable performance. Mustafi was also great and hope his injury is not too bad and wish him a speedy recovery. As for Ceballos the guy has got great passing ability and ball control. Hope he remains with Arsenal and MA plays him regularly.

  6. Martinez:-Injured mustafi,was an accident but he shouldnt have come for the ball.
    Had a very nervy moment.Made a good save.But his movement on the ball is quicker and better than leno

    Bellerin:-Not a solid defensive performance or an offensive performance.Some situations he dealt better while in some situations he could have done better.Still not sharp.
    Mustafi:-Lovely diagonals(i didnt miss luiz).Good penetrating passes as well.
    Away fans singing his name says all about his performance.Unfortunately injured.

    Sokratis:-Not a solid defensive performance later in the match but his aerial clearances are superb.I like his aggressive nature but sometimes that leads to mistakes which i saw in some moments.Overall an ok performance.

    Saka:-Not much to do defensively as Xhaka covered well for him and always gets the support of “never walking” martinelli.His offensive contribution is superb,1 goal and an assist.Superb display on strength.MOTM for me.

    Guendouzi:-Should be more disciplined if not will get a red in the near future.(but it was fun to watch him get angry and taunting opposition fans).Controlled the match well.Good interceptions when his teammates made poor passes.But needs to work on positioning and should read the game faster,sometimes he holds on to the ball too long.Very young and has great potential so will fortunately improve.Solid match.

    Xhaka:-Made very good diagonals.Was very instrumental in switching play like mistafi.He made some bad passes but the team covered it well.He was very good defensively as well.Moves the ball much quicker than earlier.A solid performance and must say he seems to be a good leader.

    Willock:-His opening 30 minutes as a 10 is superb.Good positioning but sometimes i feel he could have done better in some instances.His dribbling sometimes is bad and touches as well.Had no impact in the 2nd half offensively but his overall workrate is superb.And must remember that he is still a youngster and has loads of potential.I see him as a good no.8 than 10.But MA was saying that he sees a future for willock in the no.10 position so might be the ozil replacement.”8″

    Pepe:-This was not his game to be honest.Not very bad but an ok performance.Lost the possession multiple times but he did make some brilliant runs.

    Nketiah:-Good workrate.Got a goal.He still has much to learn but a solid display from him.

    Martinelli:-I never saw him walking.Always try to make those line breaking runs.Assisted Saka’s goal.Might give a selection dilemma for MA when auba returns.He also has many areas to work on.His touches and hold up play are two of those.lost the possession multiple times and is only second to pepe in that.

    Holding:-Would have given him a standard 5 but was poor yesterday.Maybe lack of game time was the reason.Was at fault on the first goal(but i think that was offside).

    Ceballos:-Created 2 or 3 good chances and played as an 8.He is slow though and still holds on to the ball for too long sometimes.Created 2 or 3 good chances from some lovely through balls.Encouraging but i dont know if he will stay.
    Niles:-Standard “5”

  7. I agree with most of the ratings and comments in the article though I thought Xhaka played well and at left back most of the time to cover when Saka went marauding forward. Guendouzi was a 7 for me, good passion but thought he would be sent off eventually and needs to calm down a little.

  8. I loved that 3-4-3 formation, it really suits Saka. Gendouzi bossed central midfield on his own. A lot to take from this game, really. Now let’s focus on Burnley! COYG

  9. Ceballos-the player we need to use instead of lazy Ozil.Great passing ability,ball control,interceptions,helping the defense.Use him,don,t wanna see the useless Ozil anymore!

  10. Xhaka – 6
    Not at his best and too many passes went haywire. Isn’t it normal? Losing possession is his trademark

  11. The youngster played wonderfully, they were in the face of Bournemouth players, they ran they all over the pitch and it was very delightful to watch. A surprise actually. Xhaka for me deserves more than 6, his tackles are better and less fouls, he led from the back and that allowed the forward players to play with more strength and freedom. He also covered for Saka at the back. But overall am happy with direction of things.

  12. What a great night to be a goner, FA Cup away day on what could of been a banana fixture on a monday night.

    But by the time the rain swept in and Bournemouth got a late late goal the game was won at half time imo.

    The 2nd half arsenal were too negative in dealing with the expected pressure. Yes they absorbed it but at times they preferred the backward pass.

    Give for example when Guendouzi won the ball in the middle of the park and should of played Martinelli on, but when to Xhaka who went back to sokratis who went back to Martinez who went to holding who was high pressed and that resulted to that chance we saw that went high over.
    Not being critical of anyone. Gendouzi had his best performance in an arsenal shirt in the first half, xhaka again was the assured presence we were expecting when we signed him…

    But the performance of the 2nd half was soaked in negativity as an answer to balance the protection of the scoreline.

    Get the ball up to the wide men, they want to still play!!

    But a learning curve under ARTeta.

    First half was a 10 rating for the team and the second half was a 6 for me. So an overall 8.

  13. you can say whatever you can but the fact still remain that xhaka, Wilock And nketiah are all average and are not arsenal standard

  14. KT perhaps you could enlighten those of us who were delighted with Willock and Nketiah ,as to why exactly you feel they will never measure up to your standards?There is no point in making a profound statement unless you can back it up.The Leeds Manager and Arteta rate Nketiah highly but perhaps you have have greater understanding of what makes a player than these professionals?

  15. How on earth can you say Willock is not ‘up to Arsenal standard’ after last night? He made the first goal by turning his opponent just like Wilshire used to. Yes he has a lot to learn, but for me he gives so much more than Ozil in that position.

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