Arsenal drew 1-1 with Southampton in Wednesday’s Premier League clash. Here are the player ratings.
Off the back of the worst start to a top-flight season since 1974/75, Arsenal hosted Southampton at the Emirates Stadium looking to avoid five straight home defeats for the first time in their history.
In the pouring north London rain, Arsenal relinquished plenty of the ball to Southampton, who started on the front foot, with Theo Walcott finding acres of space in between Kieran Tierney and Gabriel to collect possession and calmly dink the ball over Bernd Leno.
There were smatterings of promising moments in attack for Arsenal, but they were few and far between amid total control from the visitors, who deservedly went into the break in front.
Dominating the ball after the break, Arsenal did the unfathomable and scored a goal. Magnificent play from Bukayo Saka saw him drive with the ball from wide, beat three men, play in Eddie Nketiah who laid of Pierre-Emerick Aubamayeng to slot home.
Then, Arsenal were back to their old tricks, as Gabriel foolishly got himself sent off for a second yellow card after needlessly felling Walcott. Old habits die hard.
Wave after wave of Southampton attack followed, with Nathan Redmond seeing his effort strike the bar, and then in the dying seconds, Rob Holding crashed a header off the bar to come within a whisker of stealing the points.
In the end, a point gained. A valuable one, and a battling one.
Goalkeeper & Defenders
Bernd Leno (GK) – 6/10 – Same as usual: picks the ball out of the net and then has a mostly comfortable evening otherwise. A few tame shots and some that stung the palms to deal with. Somewhat shaky on deliveries but it’s always tough when the opposition crowd the goalkeeper.
Rob Holding (CB) – 6/10 – Poor to begin with. What excuse you’ll make is that the switch to a back-three unsettled Holding, having grown accustomed to the previous setup. That isn’t being totally just, however, as poor positioning and distribution out of the back is nobody’s fault but his. Then, when the balls came flying in, he made some great clearances. Chalk and cheese.
Gabriel Magalhaes (CB) – 2/10 – Could just copy and paste the above in the case of Gabriel. He would have got a smoother ride since he’s been excellent this season, but while his aggressive pressing paid off on some occasions, his decision making was poor throughout and the red card was coming.
So, so, so disappointing.
Kieran Tierney (CB) – 5/10 – Can you make the exact same excuse for Tierney? He didn’t have his usual solid(ish) evening, instead looking sloppy at the back and unable to find a teammate effectively with his normally accurate delivery. Stood firm for the late barrage.