Vital Football

Latest Arsenal FC News

Saturday's Player Ratings

Saturday's Player Ratings

Errrm, new feature I suppose. Where workloads etc. permit I will try and produce one of these after every game. However, I think it would be nice for this to be a kind of democracy, so if you fancy a stab at rating and slating the glorious Gooner boys, post on the forum and we'll see about publishing the good ones. Am I the civil libetarian of the digisphere, or mining new depths of idleness? I can't even be bothered to decide.

1.Manuel ALMUNIA- A quiet day at the office overall, but made a smart save from Kim Do Heon's deflected shot. However, still woefully lackadaisical off his line, as evidenced when Miller was amazingly allowed to reach a through ball that was 80-20 in Manuel's favour. His wander against United in 2005 seems to have left endemic scarring. Overall, my doubts surrounding him as a number one were neither vindicated nor impugned..............................7

3.Bacary SAGNA- Not called upon too often in a defensive function, but was his usual, industrious and faultless self. Provided a constant outlet for Walcott on the right which caused the Baggies problems until Toure came on. Expect to see this number against his name pretty much every week....7

8.Samir NASRI- One cannot ask for too much more than a winning goal on a player's debut. Nasri showed embryonic signs of a partnership with Clichy which, at this stage, is based more on the quality of the respective individuals than any chemistry. Nasri drifted from the touchline with impunity and consequently he became nigh on impossible for West Brom to pick up. A gorgeous through ball for Adebayor was another of his pleasing cameos.............8

10.William GALLAS- Once again marshalled the backline well and got a bit angry the one time it was found wanting. The back four were rarely troubled in any serious way, but an aerially dominant defender is imperative to compliment Gallas' nous......7

14.Theo WALCOTT- Awkward, easily moved from the ball and with some immature decision making. Yet, oddly enough, quite effective. Once Toure replaced him on the right, our threat eroded, Theo's pace terrifies defenders, pushing them further back and allowing other players a chance to weave their magic. Walcott still needs to learn how to harness his natural strengths, but he still offers something offensively. (A peak at his assists record over the last two seasons suggests this is no new phenomenon). A beautiful spin away from Cech in the first half suggests he's getting there..............................6

15.DENILSON- Adept defensively, read the game intelligently and made play with some excellent and intelligent use of the ball. Stepped in to make important interceptions breaking up West Brom's counter attacks and forced the issue. Nasri may have taken the glory, but Denilson's altruism means he takes my man of the match award............8

20.Johan DJOUROU- Largely a very assured and impressive game, though Ishamel Miller was allowed to send some Gooner hearts a flutter more than he should have, it points to the fact that Gallas and Djourou need a destroyer alongside them. The one foot Johan did put wrong in playing Miller onside, saw him make amends with a goal line block.................................7

22.Gael CLICHY- Much the same as his full back partner he was exactly as you would expect. Solid, determined, defensively sound and always carrying an attacking threat with his boundless energy. Stayed close to the touchline whilst Nasro cut in, stretching the West Brom full backs to breaking point. His improved delivery means standing off him is no longer an option for the opposition, as evidenced by his involvement in the goal...................7

25.Emmanuel ADEBAYOR- Probably tried too hard in an attempt to win the supporters back, the less than sonorous booing he received in the second half showed there is still work to do. Poor finish from Nasri's slide rule pass, particularly when Bendtner was positioned for a tap in. That said, created two chances for van Persie and one for Walcott with his running and crossing..6

26.Nicklas BENDNTER- Never afraid to become involved with the build up play as elucidated by his role in the goal. Sometimes showed a lack of sharpness with a slightly heavy final ball, but the idea was always right and you feel that with a few more games the execution will come. Divides opinion amongst Arsenal fans, but I have high hopes.................................7

27.Emmanuel EBOUE- Well, he was better in central midfield than on the right flank and had an average game. But I am not polyannaistic enough to believe he can fulfill that role long term, his anticipation is poor (I am not sure whether that is due to idleness or lack of intelligence) and his strikes at goal are increasingly the stuff of the famed John Smith 'ave it! adverts. The fact that WBAs best player was Kim playing in the hole, the very area of the pitch Eboue was operating, speaks volumes..................5

5.Kolo TOURE- Had absolutely no idea how to play right wing and why should he? The substitution may have been an attempt to tighten defensively, but ended up being an exercise in futility. A harsh mark which is really more down to the manager's judgement than Toure himself. I felt for him.........4

11.Robin van PERSIE- Added variety and had two half chances in his short time on the pitch. Though more trust in his right foot might have bought a goal after some quality pivoting in the area.......................7

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Tim Stillman
Date:Monday August 18 2008
Time: 9:54PM


I agree that Bendtners ideas were right. He has a midfielders eye for a ball though the execution wasn't quite right. But he is going to be a really good player that seems evident. Having said that Ade's comparatively low rate can only be because he didn't score. When comparing the stats between Bendtner and Adebayor; Bendtner had 3 shots, made 24 passes with 54% accuracy and had one assist attempt. Adebayor was on the pitch longer of course but had 5 shots made 41 passes with 90% accuracy and had 5 assist attempts. Even when adding RvP's stats to Niks their joint contribution still falls short of Ade's. Stats don't tell the whole story of course, and can even be misleading, but the work that Ade gets through can be under appreciated for want of a goal.
18/08/2008 22:27:00
Generally agree, and am as much an Eboue "hater" as most others, but I think he had a very good game (as evidenced by your chosing Denilson as the MOM - imo his performance was helped by Eboue). I think he did the simple thing very effectively and chose his moments to break forward with good effect. His shooting was horrendous hence probably a 6.5 or 7, but 5 seems a little harsh.
18/08/2008 22:27:00
Agree with most everything in there except Eboue's rating. I don't like Eboue particularly, (being American he causes me too much embarrassment when I have to explain diving to a non football fan) but he did an adequate job in the role this week. He panics when it is his time to shoot so I don't believe he is even a third choice answer for the DM role, but for the week he did well enough. In a way, I think Denilson's positive rating owes much to Eboue being next to him. I think he rated a 6/7 for what his role really was on the day.
18/08/2008 23:43:00
A 5 for Eboue?? Ouchy!!!
18/08/2008 23:57:00
I also have go agree that Eboue deserved a higher mark than 5. Hmm maybe 6. Kind of like Kolo, that's not his daytime job (which is what, I'm not sure, other than Sagna's backup in RB). He did well considering he's not a DM by trade. Otherwise I agree with LD's marks and what you guys said above.
Lou the Gunneress
19/08/2008 00:01:00
... especially the Denilson bit. I was jumping up and down about Nasri. But yes, I'm sold on the suggestion that Denilson's altruism and ability shone through the (joint) MotM performance.
Lou the Gunneress
19/08/2008 00:08:00
c'mon tim, surely clichy deserves a 9 at least. he was faultless. best LB in the league.
19/08/2008 02:04:00
I still think that Ade wanders too much into midfield and the left flank looking for short passes and little one-twos. This means that most of the time when crosses come in from the full-backs, he is often way behind the ball and struggling to get into the box. He tries to emulate Thierry Henry a bit too much by always wandering to the left flank but he is not as good. In front of goal, he had a chance that Henry would have buried eyes closed but he failed to get any bend on the ball. 6 sounds fair.
19/08/2008 04:11:00
imo Bendtner should have been a 6, for me he played too many heavy passes and misread a few runs of the other players. I also think that the Eboue's 5 was just too low, yes, ok he had a few wild shots, but overall he deserves a 6 imo
19/08/2008 07:44:00
I'll explain the Eboue one a bit more, the DM position is as much about what you do off the ball as what you do on it. Eboue didn't offer any cover at all when WBA came forward, when the ball happened to come close to him he was o.k, but he didn't chase it and Kim was allowed to affect the game further than any WBA player. I rarely saw him in the position he was meant to be in and he spends so much of a game rocking back on his heels, that he just doesn't win any 50-50s. For me Denilson played both positions, defensive and attacking, Eboue was largely a bystander. The irony here is that I am not an Eboue hater and tend to stick up for the guy a fair bit. Adebayor's six was down to poor decision making in the final third, this was partly a lack of sharpness and partly him trying too hard to impress, my source of annoyance with the sitter he missed was not the missed chance, but the fact that Bendtner was standing on front of an open goal and onside to his right, Birmingham last season should have taught Ade a lesson that he clearly hasn't learned. But I believe I acknowledged his role in creating us a few chances.
Little Dutch
19/08/2008 09:07:00
Page 1/3
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3

Login to post a comment

Recent Arsenal Articles

Stats: Arsenal v AC Milan

All the stats from Arsenal (3) vs (1) AC Milan, Emirates Stadium, 15/3/18 Att:

Arsenal v AC Milan - Team Sheets

Arsenal are at the Emirates Stadium with AC Milan the visitors today, this is an 8.05pm kick-off - the line-ups have been confirmed.

Who Makes Southgate's Squad For March

England manager Gareth Southgate has now confirmed his squad for the upcoming games in the month of March.

Could Arsenal Star Have Signed A Pre-Contract With AC Milan?

I'm certainly not saying that's the case, but with Jack Wilshere's contract at Arsenal still sitting on the table, it's a strange set of quotes from AC Milan's Gennaro Gattuso.

Arsenal Archived Articles

Vital Arsenal articles from

Site Journalists

Write for Vital Arsenal
Write For Vital Arsenal
Apply Here

Current Poll (see more polls)

EL - AC Milan MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Sub - Chambers20%
Sub - Elneny0%
Sub - Kolasinac0%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites
Write for Vital Football
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
The Vital Football Members League

Recent Arsenal Results (view all)

Arsenal Fixtures

Vital Football Comment