Arsenal v Palace – KJ’s Player Ratings

Arsenal 2 – 1 Crystal Palace, Player Ratings by KJ

Szczesny – 6
Wasn’t at his best today. Wasn’t commanding enough during free kicks and almost cost us late on with a poor claim for a Palace corner.

Debuchy – 6
He was similarly poor. Was good offensively but struggled massively defensively. He was easily turned by Bolasie/Puncheon throughout the game and always seemed to come out poorly in the one on one duels.

Chambers – 8 (MOTM)
An absolutely quality performance by our young English defender. He was as composed as you like and was never flustered by the pressure put on him by Palace when they broke. He is a consummate professional.

Koscielny – 7
Did score the goal today to rectify his mistake but it was a mistake he shouldn’t have made. He seems to struggle at defending zonally from set plays.

Gibbs – 6
He struggled like Debuchy to really impact the game and wasn’t good enough defensively.

Arteta – 6
He didn’t really affect the game. He was okay defensively but he slowed down play a bit too much and didn’t really lead by example as he’d done previously when we went down a goal.

Ramsey – 6.5
He had an absolute shocker today and I would’ve happily given him a 5 had he not saved us in the dying moments. It’s the sign of a world class player. To have such a poor performance only to then go on and win it for your team is what wins titles.

Wilshere – 6.5
He was slightly better than Ramsey. Wenger has said he was ill leading up to this game so it is understandable why he wasn’t as explosive as usual.

Sanchez – 6
He struggled quite a bit today. Held onto the ball for far too long and didn’t really get his head up enough. He’s adjusting and is figuring out that he hasn’t got the time he had in La Liga. But he still managed to assist Koscielny for the equaliser.

Cazorla – 5
A shocking performance by him. Constantly lost the ball and rarely made a meaningful pass.

Sanogo – 5
Never got any real service but didn’t really go out of his way to get on the ball.

Monreal – 7
Very good when he came on. Drove the team forward on the left-hand side and combined well with Sanchez and Cazorla.

Chamberlain – 6
He sped up the game when he came on but eventually ran out of ideas and constantly lost the ball in silly positions.

Giroud – 7
Came on and made a meaningful contribution for our goal. He will probably start against Besiktas.

Final comments: All in all, it was a good win considering how poor we were. It’s clear to see what Özil offers us, especially against teams that just sit back. But we’ll most likely improve against the Turkish side on Tuesday and with more space, I expect us to be hurting them.


  1. I actually agree with all of these for once… We were out of sync today but still got the 3 points, can’t complain too much. Hope we destroy Besiktas, COYG!

      1. Tapping the ball in was no big feat. But his focus was again amazing. With the ball bouncing from player to player Ramsey was aware enough to stay onside – the key to that goal.

        You can see him in the moments before Giroud headed the ball down to Debuch, Ramsey took a couple of little steps away from goal to ENSURE he was onside.

        I believe that is the difference for Ramsey between now and 2012 when he played often poorly. He now has such amazing focus and concentration – it is not an accident that he is playing so well now.

    1. On this day in 1977, a legend was born. His name is

    2. It’s the fact that a bunch of new signings are playing together. I don’t expect a lapse in concentration at the back once Mertesacker is back

    1. You may well be right. But Wenger’s plan, I believe, is to use an incredible midfield attacking force for most of the scoring – Ramsey, Ozil, Sanchez, Cazorla, Ox Walcott, Poldi etc. That is why he has acquired so many quality midfielders recently.

      I just think Wenger is trying to use the strikers more for holdup play and for knocking down headers in the box and things like that – not as primary scorers.

      Whether or not this works, that is another story. We shall see.

    2. Arsenal fans might be the most loyal fans in the world, but we are also a big bunch of b*tches, one game and everybody is writing conclusions, c’mon, support your “team” for once, …..yea yea, y’all can now roll in the thumb downs…

  2. Yesterday’s game shows just how much we lack a striker and a lw. To those who said our attack was good enough to win the title because of last week’s performance, I hope yesterday opened your eyes. We need either a lw or a striker and are still in need of a dm although arteta wasn’t too bad.

    1. Do agree that we have certain positions that could be upgraded with 2,3 new signings but think we should stop pointing finger at certain players for a team general poor performance.
      Crystal Palace is a very well organized defensive team. When our player got the ball in the middle of the pitch, they immediately fall back deep and deny all our pacy runner space at the back to operate. When we get close to the penalty box, they will have players closing down, challenge and commit fouls to break our rhythm – while their other players try to get in our line of passing and isolate our players from each other. The solution is not as easy as getting any pacy forward with good finishing(because Gioud/Sanogo sucks and slow), any striker will have same problem finding space when dealing with Palace defence yesterday (unless he is Messi/Suarez level) or a LW. Think the solution is to move the ball much faster and with more accuracy, more intensive off the ball movement so their defence cannot track, also need to have better understanding with each other (given we have some new signings). And when plan A – short pass and one-two fail to work we should have plan B – cross, header, set pieces. The good things is we have different types of player now – pace (Sanchez, Walcott), power (Giroud, Sanogo) and we score in set pieces now (both goals) – but our delivery and cross are still really really poor. All these can actually be improved during training and match day preparation, hope our players can step up another gear as our yesterday performance although showing a lot of grit, does not have the quality required to win major titles.

      1. IF the EPL was decided last Season from when TP joined Palace, THEY would be in the UCL this Season.
        They finished 11th as it was.
        First game of the Season is always tough.
        YES, it was not a great performance, but, we had 75% possession, and, around 18 shots, 6 on target, so, lets take the 3 points and move on to better things.
        Stop, all this negativity every post match discussion.
        Agree with the post that Callum Chambers was MOTM, and MOST of the ratings, but, last week in the CS that MIDFIELD DOMINATED THE CITY midfield, so chill out guys.

    2. Striker? To do what? Yesterday we did not bring the ball forward for a striker to do something useful with it. Ibrahimovic if he had played for us yesterday would have been nothing more than average player. Let’s draw the lesson and be done with it. We need to buckle up especially for that crucial game against Besiktas.

  3. Sanogo was really poor today, no ball control, no hold up play and no self confidence. Wenger still have a lot to work on that kid. And also I think wenger should play giroud against term like palace.

    1. it made sense to play Sanogo because Giroud wasn’t fit. Giroud is better than Sanogo so throwing him on when Palace were exhausted was the best thing to do. he will start ahead of him as soon as he’s match fit

  4. Before this match I craved for a world class CDM and a CD. But after the match I would like us to have a striker as first priority. Considering Manolas and Rabiot deals done, I would want a world class striker first. A class CDM is a good to have next, but a striker is a must

  5. Is this a joke Wilshere 6.5?! And chamberlain 6 no offense but he was awful today also I think you didn’t give enough credit to arteta he actually played pretty well.

    1. Agreed, Jack was simply awful today, I was beginning to think he was colour blind the number if times he passed the ball to a Palace player!

  6. Gibbs is rated too high. I’m not sure what he did on the field and what his strengths are. He is not a strong crosser or passer. He’s injured again which is unfortunate, but common for him. Montreal had more of an impact on the game. —5.0

    Arteta is rated too low. His distribution from the back was pinpoint so your score is a bit harsh. His movement off the ball was excellent as well which is why he had so many touches. Probably one the better games he has played in a while. If you are expecting him to be a good defender, then you will always rate him low. — 7.0

    I can’t really argue with the rest of your scores.

    1. To be fair to Gibbs there were so many time when he’d be open, but nobody would send him the ball. Cazorla also drifted to the center a lot which left our left side exposed

  7. Anyone notice how chamakh had a good game and left his boot in. I reckon best mate nasri had a word in his ear. #ossers

  8. Anyone notice how chamakh had a good game and left his boot in. I reckon best mate nasri had a word in his ear. K#ob jockey’s.

  9. we are gooners, we change our opinion about the players on a daily basis. last week – we dont need any striker. now – we need a lw and st

    make up your mind

  10. U can blame Sanogo for whatever reasons even after u all put him in your line ups before the game but i prefer blaming a striker for missing scoring opportunities and not being in the right position for a pass.Sanogo was up there and there were no through balls coming to him and for that he has become raw and should go on loan!

  11. Yes, our link u play was horrible and there were far too many misplaced passes, especially in the second half…BUT you have to hand it to Palace, their tactics were spot on defensively. They played really well and deserve some credit. Stat wise, we dominated them with 76% possession and 14 attempts on goal to something like 6. We deserved the win, even though it was a poor performance. Arteta was Motm in my opinion and Chambers was also excellent. I also think Wilshere had a good game, but I noticed he is seriously unfit and struggled to keep up.

    Our left flank was grossly underused, because Cazorla keeps drifting in to the center of the pitch. This inhibits our attack and all Palace had to do was make sure the centre and right flank were covered. I really wish Wenger would play Campbell or Chamberlain down the left, to give us extra width. Lastly, Sanogo has a bright future, but I really think we need another world class CF in the mould of Cavani to lead the attack. He can rotate with Giroud and Sanogo which would not only give us decent squad depth, but with a player of his caliber, would be able to get those types of goals that Giroud and Sanogo just are incapable of getting. You all know what I mean.

  12. HJack wilshere 6 wat a load of rubbish, 3 he deserves and he has done for quite sum time. Im not gna say cazorla had a good game he didnt but fir me playing outwide contributing to that, he needs to be played in middle.

    No more excuses, no hes been injured, Jack wilshere is finished im sorry to say but hes a liability to the team. Doesnt shoot,cant tackle,constantly falling on fall, tries these stuoid one,two passes without looking at playes, I really dont understand how he is any where near the first team, mourinho,van gaal,pellegrini any top coach with the way jacks been performing last year or so Would NEVER pit him in startingx11, blind faith from wenger needs to stop.
    plz ppl dnt start with the “remember ramsey excuse” even that has been worn out for him.

  13. I’m worried that if Ramsey keeps playing like this then next summer Real Madrid or Barcelona will offer huge money and the player will leave. You have seen have how they can spend £60-85m on players if they want.

    1. There may be some good news there. I believe some clubs have not pursued Ramsey already because they know he is Arsenal through and through and it would take an incredible amount of cash to pry Ramsey from Wenger who loves him like a son.

    2. Think we have plenty more things to worry about before thinking about next summers transfer window Ted. I’m with mohawk on this one – can’t see him leaving, certainly not before Wenger. He has time on his side, worst case scenario he will give his all for 4 or 5 years and still have one big move left in him whilst at his peak. My heart says he will be our “Gerrard” and won’t go anywhere.

  14. Wilshere better than Ramsey…..Which game you have seen, Mr KJ????Wilshere constantly lost the ball and was the worst player for arsenal in this match…..Just check the comments on other arsenal link and you will come to face with reality….Apart for one small mistake which led to goal, Koscielny was great in this match, reaching and clearing the ball every time which prevented any other goal. Chambers was good but he need time to settle down. But English media is again hyping another English player by giving MOTM for his good performance.

    1. Agree on JW and AR. But not re CC – there is always so much hype banded around it is sometimes difficult to spot a non-hyped assessment. CC as MOTM is not hype, only Kos would run him close for that accolade. He has been our best and most consistent player over the last 3 matches – no hype. Don’t know whether this reflects badly on his more established team mates or means we have a proper player on our hands. Interesting to see what happens when Merts returns.

  15. Anyone with mert coming back and most probably displacing chambers, id fancy putting chambers into that cdm slot either next to Ramsey or alongside Ramsey and wilshere. The lad has been playing really well and at cdm could excell for us, whilst mert and kosc get their partnership foing again

  16. & debuchy had a good game atleast a 7, agree chambers was Motm liking the lad already very able back up abd what I luv is he loves a takle gets stuck right in, I honestly believe he could also do a very good job as id go as far to say better then he has done as a c.bk.

  17. I watched the Palace goal and I don’t know how you can blame Kos alone for that goal. Hangeland was being marked by SANCHEZ so clearly there was a mistake somewhere but Hangeland ran over toward Kos – that is it.

    Unless Steve Bould comes out and tells us what the assignments were and what the mix up was, we won’t really know.

    And Kos played superb defense, scored the amazing header for the first goal, and was the first player in the box to send the ball over to Giroud to start the 2nd. He was MOTM for me..

    1. mohawk: Heard Carragher say that Sanchez was not there to mark Hangeland. Sanchez was in the second line of defence in a zonal system and his job was to block runners, not to go with them – Hangeland ran through him and it was for Kos to pick him up. Sanchez failed to block the runner and Kos failed to spot and pick up Hangeland when he came through. This zonal thing must be a bit of a headfu***r sometimes for these guys.

      1. You could well be right. I heard another analyst suggesting that Sanchez was really marking Hangeland because someone else missed either a player or zone assignment.

        But only Bould knows for sure and if the zonal or mixed marking system is that vague and confusing as you also suggest, then that also confuses the issue of which single player was at fault and needs to improve – it is a only confusion.

  18. Yeah KJ. Try this time round, but arteta deserves a better rating than jack. That’s all, coz he was sound defensively and he’s a DM so that’s what matters!

    1. Yes. KJ under-rated Arteta this time. But at least he did not give him a rating of “3” as he often does with one player each week.

  19. I am not seeing many comments on Sanchez. I actually thought he played very poorly today – especially in the 1st half. He often struggled to hold possession and is crosses were simply awful.

    But that late chest control trick was worth the price of admission.

    1. I think everyone has noticed but are just being politely quiet mohawk. Looks like he is re-calibrating everything in his game; his radar is down and I don’t know if they use a heavier ball in Spain but his weight of pass is way out. (Mind you, his assist for Kos’s goal was a beauty). He just needs to play. What he has bought to the party straight away is that Barca scampering and terrier like tenacity all over the pitch.

      1. it’s gonna take some time for him to adjust to the league and the new players he is with, same thing some were saying about Ozil. Just hold your shorts, folks – Sanchez is only gonna get better

  20. Gud assesment overall but Arteta was wonderful..defended very well so i rate hm 7 and Wilshere is just a spoil overhyped of the usaul English stars. No wonder England does so well in competition.@)%/?&€(.¥@;=(im hurting inside cos people laugh at me fo supporting England always) JW PLIZ WAKE AND LEARN FROM PAUL SCHOLESz life stly cos u areeeeee mo talented. Stop drinking and smoking u Gaza wannabeeeee

  21. In my opinion we shouldve gotten rosicky in. When the possesion play isnt working at all i think we need some more direct plays. I called that wilshere swap a few minutes before but chambo shouldnt have came on at that moment.(i love chambo otherwise but it didnt fit the match imo)

  22. Both Goals scored by defender and midfielder. Yesterday there was no evidence of either of our strikers getting a smell of a goal. So we need a top class striker.

    1. Never mind not “getting a smell” of a goal, they never got one clear cut chance to miss a goal. Midfield at fault – was abject.

  23. The faster Ozil gets back in the line up, the quicker Wilshere will find his rightful place on the bench (Ramsey will play in his favourite position then)… Not even close to average… He is just utterly poor.
    He should take example on Ramsey and get himself on track…!!

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