Arsenal v Chelsea Player ratings – Kids steal the show

Yesterday’s win over Chelsea was nothing short of an astounding performance considering how dire the Gunners have been in the last couple of months, so it has probably been a long time since we have seen such generous ratings as I am going to give today..

So here we go…

Leno: 8 – An excellent penalty save at a crucial moment in the game, and didn’t really have much to do, especially in the first half.

Bellerin: 7
Captain for the day and had a pretty solid performance. Still neds to work on his crossing…

Mari: 7
He had a dodgy start and was lucky not to avoid a second yellow quite a few times. I’m sure he will improve with more games under his belt.

Holding: 7
One of his more solid games at last. Maybe he could develop a tight partnership with Mari…

Tierney: 8
I can’t help but like his spirit and determination whoever the opposition. Excellent game at both ends of the pitch

Elneny: 7
Back to his solid best now after recovering from his Covid scare. Good to see..

Xhaka: 8
Great goal and definitely one of his better performances lately. Maybe the critics will leave him alone for a few days after that.

Saka: 9
He is fearless and will be an integral part of the team for years to come. With him and Martinelli the futuire is looking brighter…

Martinelli: 9
Our best signing in years, this young Brazilian has everything and is dangerous every time he gets on the ball.

ESR: 7
Surely he now deserves a run in the starting XI. If he carries on with the promise shown so far he is another star of the future.

LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 26: Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal gives his team instructions during the Premier League match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Emirates Stadium on December 26, 2020 in London, England. The match will be played without fans, behind closed doors as a Covid-19 precaution. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Laca: 8
Laca is excellent with a mobile attack around him. Held his nerve well to convert the penalty. Great to see him come back to form in style.

The Subs:

Willock: 6 – Didn’t make much impact. Another big chance squandered

Pepe: 5 – I don’t know what to think of Pepe nowadays. Is it worth persevering with our expensive Frenchman?

Mustafi: N/A

Tags Chelsea Martinelli Saka


      1. So Captain – why does Arteta continue to pick lazy players? And of course choose one as his teams Captain?Funny that don’t you think? But of course you know best as always PAL

  1. Pepe and 50 million euros might just get us Aourar and Depay from Lyon. They have a good dynamic at Lyon and could easily replicate with us.

      1. He can be sold for significant loss. Raul should be investigated for this dodgy transaction. We should cut our losses and try to offload him. A very expensive Gervinho.

  2. Sorry Elneny does not deserve a 7. He was not sharp and did not release the ball to the right player on time.
    Martinelli is a breath of fresh air but he missed an easy chance to score.
    No rating for MA?

    1. Sure Elneny was slow and lost possession for a Chelsea counter attack which was fortunately broken by Holding.

  3. Mari and Bellerin were average. Mari gave an easy penalty in a crucial moment, and Bellerin gave away a lot of easy balls, as usual.
    Willock was bad and out of his dept, his level is the U-23 team. I will give him 4.
    Holding was great, he was a real leader in the absence of key defenders, he should get 8-9. he also took more responsibility than Mari, you can’t give them both 7.

  4. Elneny was not that Sharp…
    Lost a ball couple of times easily and in risky area..
    Was trying to play too much risky
    Mari was okay till that Penalty
    It was stupid challenge…
    Mount was going nowhere…
    ESR was superb as Number 10
    His movement was really problematic for Chelsea
    He was opening the spaces for Saka, Martinelli..

  5. Emile Smith-Rowe recovered the ball six times last night, which was the second best among all attacking players in the Chelsea game. Mason Mount was the best by recovering the ball seven times

    This was what Emery wanted from his CAM and his high pressing system is currently working well with Villareal

  6. Elneny needs to improve. His performance was awful yesterday.

    I don’t know what arteta saw in willock and nketia, it is obvious that these are not ready yet.
    Arteta’s sub is always terrible and predictable.
    Arteta almost cost us the maximum points because of his clueless substitution.
    Even though we won the game, I still don’t rate arteta.

  7. Mari, Bellerin and Elnenny weren’t in all honestly that great. Xhaka had his best game ever for Arsenal an 8 for me but its took 5 years to achieve that. The rest of the team performed well. Big futures in Saka and Martinelli but we new that. Tierney got to be future captain. Its now got to be repeated and not a one off.

  8. Does anyone agree with me that playing martinelle, saka, ESR as a no 10 that lacca suites those youngsters better auba, his work rate is better and hold up play…

    1. I don’t think he suits it better than Auba but he definitely player very well with them around him and his older shoulders kept them calm too. His hold up play is amazing but not any use if there’s not the options around him, which is where the 3 of them came in. When it’s just him and Auba can be predictable

  9. I only hope this performance isnt all hype because I saw he same problems in our play as seen from the precious matches. The difference here is that we were better in defending and tried our very best not to concede cheap goals like we always do. Our next match match will tell us a lot about where we currently stand. I’ll like to say the criticism on Willock is too much. He is going to be another scapegoat. Smith- Rowe just has too much hype and for me needs to prove more. I dont like hyping above average performances from players even if I rate them. He does deserve more chances because we need his skillset. The next match and how we play for me would tell me what the future holds this season.

  10. Ok so the kids shine, what does it prove?
    That Arteta can’t manage the big names period
    What happens when they’ll be back to the team? Or will he be playing youngsters all along I don’t know.
    What I know, is that Tuchel is available and that Auba really rates him. If we go for him now I am sure we can still save the season

    1. This comment about Tuchel’s management is from an avid PSG fan who’s been watching PSG play week in week out:

      – No distinct style of play, no identity and no fight
      – The players have regressed and not improved, e.g. Verratti
      – The medical staff is the among the worst in the world. PSG have about ten first-team players injured at the moment
      – This season, PSG haven’t won against any of the top teams in Ligue 1 and PSG even struggle against mediocre sides
      – In the UCL last season, PSG were overwhelming favorites playing against Atalanta and Leipzig. Once they played a top side like Bayern, they were eaten alive and the midfield disappeared
      – This has been the case for 3 years with Tuchel but an outsider wouldn’t know it if he just follows PSG in the UCL and read domestic score lines

      Tuchel broke the highest winning percentage record at PSG, but I’m not so sure about him after watching PSG vs Bayern in UCL Final last season

      1. g o t, So what ? Why is this of interst to Gooners ? After all, there is no vacancy nor will be any time in the foreseeable future.

  11. The youngsters showed up today. Honestly everyone on the bench should remain there for the next game.

    Haven’t seen that type commitment since Utd game. Love what ESR brought to the game; along with Martinelli & Saka they ran at Chelsea most of the game.

    Enjoyed watching Arsenal play; energetic, hungry, spirited, all fans want to see or ask for.

    1. 👍👍👍 It was a joy to watch those 3 out there… long may it continue..happy gooner households last night!! 😉
      Hope you and your loved ones had a wonderful Christmas, Durand…

  12. While Mari lacks match fitness, I very much doubt if he will ever be more than a back up for Gabriel, who it has to be said, has been shaky of late.Holding and Tierney were our top defenders, and Elneny was notj at his best.I’m afraid some of the criticism of Willock is way over the top.He was easily beaten in the run up to the Chelsea goal but his running off the ball is excellent and he covers the ground so well.I accept that his close control and decision making leaves a lot to be desired, but this young guy has a lot of potential which will emerge, I am sure.

    1. I don’t know why we always have to overly criticize one youngster so as to big up another. Notice people are now hyping up Smith-Rowe?? I rate Smith-Rowe very much but he was above average yesterday. I agree he should be given more chances and has been unlcuky not get them by now. He’s been unluckly with injuries too. Willock is a box to box player similar to Ramsey and his style is stats inclined ie. he gets goals and assists or in positions where he would usually get them. He is also skilful and can beat his man too. I saw all this from the academy and for me like Nketiah he lacks a bit of confidence. He was actually good vs Man City though.

  13. Still buzzing! With a relatively easy run of games coming up we have something to build on and regain our confidence.

    Martinelli has had a huge impact since he’s come back and running out or superlatives for Saka – really hope we can keep them fit and firing for years to come!

    Something to look forward to; Partey coming back into the starting XI and hopefully an upgrade on Elneny / Xhaka / Ceballos in the January window.

    Other positives:
    1. Rob Holding, and
    2. Maitland-Niles and Soares should keep Bellerin on his toes for the rest of the season.

  14. When all are fit:
    Niles…….Gab.. Hold……Tierney
    ………Partey……. Xhaka
    Saka…………………….. Martinelli

  15. When the kids came off, the performance dropped again. Pepe is just awful. Tierney must be so frustrated from going from having Martinelli on the left to Pepe. ESR brought the high energy we’ve been calling for all season to our midfield and he’s the reason I think everything worked for us attacking wise. He was there to link up with Bellerin, Saka, and Martinelli all game. Saka and Marti, we know their quality and they finally got to play together and upped the tempo of other players too. I’ll also say Xhaka showed up today, but still needs to go for obvious reasons. But thank you for finally playing well. Defense was so-so. Mari can look comfortable and then uncomfortable very quick. Still dont get why we bought him. Leno saved a potential disaster. Laca still not giving what is needed for a striker but still working hard and showing dedication which I’ll take over the senior players who clearly dont give a hoot.

  16. People need to keep a bit of realism from the sheer joy of beating Chelsea and deservedly so … but not with the substance induced deleriuum on show here … tiernay saka and Martineli do give real grounds for hope going forward … and with a bit of decent coaching a place can be found for AMN … but willock and nketiah need to be jettisoned and smith Rowe loaned out in January … didn’t do much wrong yday but part of a midfield that was dominated by Chelsea which is why they had more of the ball (60 40) more shots (twice as many though fewer on target ) and more corners than we did … xhaka ‘s wonder goal doesn’t hide his endless misplaced passes lack of physical presence and lack of vision and same for elneny … both need to go as soon as a decent offer comes in preferably in January … bellerin stepped up yday with some great attacking runs but remains a weak point defensively … holding an improved player but not sure he should be starting and combined with mari it’s a pace problem against fast attacks… but CBs no longer an issue other than getting rid of surplus requirements … laca did well holding up ball and finding space though he’s never going to be a goal machine … Brighton will be a really good game to judge arteta’s mind set .. important that youngsters are kept in starting line up and not dropped for our seasoned failures

    1. RW1, realism and top perspective! As a summation of the overall picture it is accurate, even though it leaves aside all the many details of the many positives for the younger hungrier players which are our future. Oh, AND our present!

    2. Well said RW1 – agree with every word. I must confess to also losing perspective last night – I had forgotten what winning felt like. Even a reasonable performance against a poor Chelsea was so much better than the dross we have had to witness lately. I agree Brighton now is a really interesting one. Will MA put the pensioners back in or can he learn and make a U-turn? He MUST see it now…or not?

  17. I think some ratings are way generous, but I am not complaining at all, lol. I think enjoying this performance is the best feeling until we are brought crashing back to reality, or maybe not?

  18. I’ve been calling for Arteta to play the young guns since. They have something to play for unlike the likes of Auba, Ozil, Laca, Willian and more, that are big boys and are richer than the manager. I wish he(Arteta) has the gut to continue with the young guns

  19. So then Admin Pat, , you say you “don’t know what to think of Pepe”! Well I do know ! And like all lazy coasters who are just clearly going through the motions and who have no interest in our club, other than the wages they get, I find them disgusting, bone idle, cheats who have no character, no backbone and no morality !

    This season, that includes Pepe, Willian and Auba and if I had my way, I would get ALL lazy poisonous players GONE asap.

    By keeping them you make the club more poisonous, no matter what talent they might have once had, and all they do is spread the laziness poison while taking, taking,taking and giving NOTHING of any value back.

    1. Agree Jon – not only their regular pathetic performances but their continued first team selection must be killing morale. And you have named the prime culprits. We can excuse playing badly, but not trying or caring – unforgivable.

  20. We had a double result yesterday ,not only did we win but I do believe Chelsea were unable to leave any of their rejects behind for Edu to sign although security are doing a second sweep of the stadium today just in case.

  21. With Martinelli back with a thunder, let’s all take a moment to meditate on the following fact:

    Arsenal fired Francis Cagigao, the man that brought Fabregas and Martinelli to the club.

    Arsenal kept Edu, the man that brought the Brazilian Ozil.

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