Dan’s Sheffield United v Arsenal Player ratings – Guendouzi gets extra for workrate

Sheffield United v Arsenal Player ratings by Dan Smith

I predicted we would lose 1-0. That’s the saddest part about Monday’s result. Anytime we are away from home it’s the same question aimed at us. Do we have the right mentality to fight or do we go missing when things get tough? it’s happened too many times to be a coincidence.

I don’t want to keep repeating myself though, but there are only so many games where we can bemoan a lack of creativity while leave Ozil at home playing on his PS4. Very soon this will become a sackable offence. So here are my Sheffield United v Arsenal Player ratings.

Leno – 5
Nothing to do at all. He spent the second half watching his peers dominate possession without working the opposition keeper. There was one long shot he nearly made a mess out of…

Kolasinac – 4
Crossing terrible, it always is! It is time to bring Tierney into the League starting XI.

Luiz – 5
He stood still at set pieces. He did it yet another time, inviting a long-distance shot. I give him an extra point for getting on the ball and picking out long passes. He is good on the ball but not a natural defender, but we knew that before we brought him.

Sokratis – 4
Not comfortable on the ball at all. Helped waste time for Sheffield with giving away fouls/lack of composure late on. It is time for Holding or Chambers to replace him. If he was Mustafi fans would be very angry!

Chambers – 6
Only player to be direct in attack. His final ball is not always decent but at least he was brave enough to take some chances.

Guendouzi – 7
Can never fault his work rate. He was the one player who seemed to have some urgency. Not always has the end product but his efforts stand out compared to the rest of his teammates.

Xhaka – 5
Gooners will again make him the scapegoat but he did his job. The problem is that by not playing an attacking midfielder, Emery is putting pressure on the rest of the midfield to do a role he not comfortable with. His long range effort closet we came to equaliser.

Willock – 5
Out of a midfield 3, his job was to drive forward. He had possession but no creativity, although anyone could have been subbed at half time. If only we had a midfielder who could pick a pass…. oh wait…

Saka – 6
At least this youngster has the bravery to try new things. He doesn’t stay in one position and tries to take on his man. He was harshly booked for diving which seemed to affect his confidence.

Pepe- 6
I have given him an extra mark for always wanting the ball and not being afraid to take risks. Given his goal drought that shouldn’t be taken for granted, but you can’t change the fact that for 72 million he needs to be better in final third.

Aubameyang – 4
We always say that apart from scoring doesn’t do a lot. That sounds strange because most of the time he finds back of net. Here though he barely touched the ball, no creative movement, a night to forget for our top scorer..


Ceballos – 5
Got on the ball a lot. He had plenty of nice touches, but the fact is though, he was brought on to unlock the door and didn’t do his job. Hardly keeping Ozil out of the squad, is he?

Lacca- 6
Unlike Auba, he fought to get the ball. His tenacity won us a couple of free kicks.

Martinelli -5
His inexperience showed.


  1. The ratings are incomplete without one for the manager. I will do that for you. It was a 1. It’s now evident that Emery’s tactics and style are not for the premier league. The other managers have figured out his tactics and his approach. He has nothing more to offer. His tenure at ARsenal was in danger the moment Ramsey hobbled off injured against Napoli. Without a suitable Ramsey replacement and with Ozil banished away from the team, the team lacks guile. They have become very predictable. The manager seems to think that benign possession without threatening the opponent goal is synonymous with controlling the match. He has lost it.

    1. They are also incomplete without one for the officials, who were the 12th man for Sheffield United in this match. VAR not used in a clear foul on Socrates, which should have been a penalty for Arsenal. Saka getting a yellow card for simulation, which was completely unfair.
      The sooner the EPL clubs approach the FA and have Reilly and his officials implement VAR, in accordance with the same rules as Europe, the better. Currently it is a farce.

      1. The rep was biased. We all know he would before the match but he didn’t prevent us from playing to our strength, he wasn’t responsible for our fbs consistently passing ball back from the opponent box, he didn’t stop our midfielders to take too long, too many touches on the ball hence allowing the opponent players ran back an regroup, he didn’t prevent PEA for not having a single shot on good and not responsible for our atrocious defending from corner kick. Sheffield were even physical in my opinion and didn’t even play that great. They allowed spaces for us to operate but why Saka, Pepe anaPEa were in space expecting balls our fbs and midfielders kept passing among themselves and passing back to defenders and then to Leno. So blame the red but last

        1. Bonaroca:- Its useless commenting, in my opinion Mr Emery should be sacked ,it is a simple as that.Oswald Carbnaro

        2. Mobella, I don’t disagree with your additional remarks, but Mike Reilly is a law unto himself, with regard to officials not utilising the sideline TV replays VAR to confirm or change decisions. This is different to the way VAR is used in Europe or was used in the World Cup in Russia.

  2. Apart from Guendouzi, Chambers & Pepe who at least tried, I wouldn’t go above 3 for the rest. Dismal performance, no urgency no desire unlike Sheffield United who really looked up for it.

    Maybe Emery should take a good look at himself and admit that his tactics are not working and probably never will. He won’t because he doesn’t have a Plan B.

    1. Agree with your assessment on those three players, especially on Chambers that was excellent in defending the right flank. Pepe has improved defensively, but his finishing and corner-taking are still atrocious

      Unfortunately most Arsenal fans here have quickly forgotten that Ozil has been offering nothing special for more than three seasons and want him back in the starting line-up. Ceballos and Willock are still not consistent enough in the no 10 position, but they haven’t even played in that position for half a season

      Nonetheless, I predict Emery would replace some players for the Palace game

      1. Yes Ozil has declined, but surely we could have fared better with another player between the lines?
        Because in the first half no one occupied that position, Willock went missing. In the second half Ceballos tried but not polished enough in that position. The real number 10 would have positioned himself just outside of the penalty box, often drifted to the flanks to overload that area, at the same time lured his markers so his previous post opened up and B2B players who likes to make late run benefited from that movement.
        Or make a run himself, targetting the space between the full back and the center back.
        Or one-two with the striker
        Or inviting penalties with fast footworks
        I saw nothing of the sorts last monday, Xhaka and Guenduozi were inclined to sit back and their long passes were wasteful. Second half no clever movement from them apart from the long shot.

    2. The ratings are unbelievably generous. Willock 5? He was a ghost! I’d give him a 1. Saka as well was a liability for majority of the game, 2. Guendouzi scores a 7 in a game we lost? I wouldn’t give anyone more than a 4.

    1. First of all good ebening..Would anyone bet that Kieran Tierney plays on Thursday and then is benched for Kolasinac on Sunday also Sokratis will keep his place and Xhaka will definitely start the game and if we lose, Emery will bang on about needing to control possession more and not concede so many corners and that we’re improving “in our way” 😂 Arsenal board need to wake up and ditch this clown while the season is young let Ljungberg take the reigns until may and then go all out for Nagglesmann or the Ajax coach. Good ebening.

      1. Of course Tierney will play on Thursday. Nobody would bet on that because it’s obvious. Nobody bets against a sure thing

        Emery can’t play the same player in the same position for 3 games in a row within a week.

        Imo Emery did the wrong thing by not playing Tierney on Monday and Sunday. He should have played Kolsanic on Thursday instead

        On Monday and Sunday Emery should have played
        Also no Xhaka

        And played on Thursday

    1. And if you think he couldn’t do any better than Xhaka, Willock and the rest of the underperforming muppets, you’re a flake!

  3. Chambers & Guendouzi are the only two players in the team actually playing for the club & Emery is a clown

  4. rumor has it that we are 4m short of meeting Cabellos value…

    so whos the fans gonna put the blame now for penny pinching?

  5. Anyone who believes Ozil will change the current Arsenal midfield is deluded. Ozil and Xhaka are luxuries we can no longer afford. They are excellent in what they can do and very poor at everything else. Today football has evolved to the level that a midfielder needs to have a bit of everything, while maintaining his uniqueness. Honestly, I can’t remember when last Ozil turned a tough game around for us. He is always the first midfielder to go missing whenever we are in difficult situation, but plays very well when we control any game. No one has Ozil’s final passes likewise Xhaka’s long balls but they are both too limited in other midfield requirements. Guendozi does not have their specialty both he is a more rounded midfielder and a modern midfielder. I still wonder why Emery is not using a midfield trio of Torriera, Guendozi and Ceballos. That’s the best midfield we can have presently until we have someone who can better detect play. Frankly speaking our midfield is worst than our defense, in fact they make our defense poorer. They hardly control a game and can’t do basic defending and closing-up. I defended Emery throughout last season except for the Crystal Palace game but I think he has no reason not to have a midfield identity in his second season. Worst still he does not look like solving it anytime soon with his over-tinkering. So I think he should lead the exit door while taking Ozil and Xhaka with him

    1. Yet another flake calling people deluded who think Ozïl couldn’t do better than the shit show we are currently seeing.

  6. Emery Emery Emery.
    To be honest he just seems to not know what he is doing. Absolutely no progress whatsoever. No visible playing style. Team looks like a group of zombies etc.

    No different from Wengers last 7 or so seasons.

    He should fix up quickly and if not by January he should be cut loose.

    Can’t waste time on hoping for the best anymore.

  7. Andrew Elder is spot on in his assessment.A bad night for a team with aspirations to make the top four.I cannot fault the players for effort but the lack of quality is there for all to see.The “black book” on the Manager does not make good reading, Watford, and Sheffield , 5 points dropped.As a Director of the Club i would not be happy with Emery at all.

  8. How can anyone get 7 for losing to club like Sheffield United.workrate doesn’t get you points and running around like headless chicken does not make anyone a great player.

    1. Unfortunately Seng our manager thinks that workrate + running around like headless chickens is the only way to play. From his many statements about this in training he rewards those who do it and completely ignores those who can actually play the game. He might as well have a team of marathon runners.

  9. Leno – 5. Not at fault for the goal but spilled a weak shot from distance lol.
    Chambers – 7. Solid in defense and did well in supplementing our attack. Deliveries not always the best though.
    David Luiz – 5. Generally did ok but he marked the air instead of opposition player in the corner which resulted in Utd’s goal.
    Sokratis – 4. All he did was foul and sideway passing.
    Kolasinac – 4. Can’t cross, can’t tackle, can’t mark players, can’t dribble.
    Xhaka – 4. Xhaka being Xhaka but at least he got a long shot that worked the keeper.
    Guendouzi – 6. Our best midfielder. Covered a lot of ground and tried to make things happen.
    Willock – 2. Saw his name on the team sheet but didn’t see him on the pitch.
    Pepe – 5. Missed a sitter but he had a decent game. Lively and he helped in defense on a few occasion.
    Saka – 4. Did nothing meaningful except the pathetic dive to win penalty.
    Aubameyang – 3. Was feeding off scraps but he should’ve get himself involved in the game instead of waiting for the perfect pass all the time.

    Ceballos – 4. All twist and turn without any actual end product.
    Lacazette – 5. Pressed opposition defender, tried to hold up the ball and fought hard until the end.
    Martinelli – 4. Did nothing meaningful with the ball. To be fair to him, he didn’t have much time to impress.

    Unai Emery – 0.1 for showing his face in the stadium.

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