Arsenal 0 – Crystal Palace 3: Player Ratings

This must be the end, surely, with Arsenal fans singing “you’re not fit to wear the shirt”, I don’t think there’s any way of coming back from this, this is certainly the end for Arsène Wenger’s Arsenal.

 

Emiliano Martinez – 6
He’s really the least of our problems, we can’t be expecting world class saves from the third choice keeper. However was unlucky with the penalty and managed to go the right way, but still couldn’t save it.

 

Hector Bellerin – 6.5
Went well going forward, but looked shaky at the back. It might be time for him to spend some time on the bench, looks nowhere near like his former self.

 

Shkodran Mustafi – 7
Picked up a yellow, has started staying on his feet, but still looks shaky at the back.

 

Gabriel – 7
The better half of the two centre backs, but still hardly anything to brag about.

 

Nacho Monreal – 7
Another solid performance from Monreal! Win, lose or draw, Nacho always puts in a shift. However, he looked massively exposed at the back, due to the left forward not tracking back.

 

Mohamed Elneny – 6
After his good performance against West Ham I was hoping for more, however, that was yet to be the case, the only highlight was his shot going slightly wide.

 

Granit Xhaka – 7
His balls forward were our only threat, but then again half of them went wayward.

 

Theo Walcott  – 6.5
Captained the Gunners again, though it was a pretty poor show from him. That post-match interview he had summed up the state of the team at the minute, “They wanted it more”.

 

Mesut Ozil – 6.5
Nothing really worked for him tonight, has always looked shaky when playing away from home.

 

Alexis Sanchez – 7
Always tried to make things happen, but nothing did happen.

 

Danny Welbeck – 6
Went missing for all the time he was on, hardly even got a touch.

 

Substitutes
Olivier Giroud – 6

Aaron Ramsey – 6

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 6.5

Thoughts on Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez situation

Wenger gave Arsenal fans a shock when he decided not to start Alexis in Arsenal’s Premier League game against Liverpool at the weekend, in which the Gunners lost 3-1.

 

Though, after the defeat, the manager was quick to defend his decision, stating it was a tactical decision more than anything – “The thinking was that we had to go more direct and I wanted to play two players who are strong in the air because we decided to go more direct. “The thinking was that we had to go more direct and I wanted to play two players who are strong in the air because we decided to go more direct.

 

However, reports from both the Guardian and Telegraph emerged yesterday that the player was actually dropped for the match as a punishment, due to the 28-year old storming out of a training session during the week. This was followed by an apparent bust-up with his teammates according to the Telegraph.

 

With the forward’s contract set to expire in 2018 and the rumours the player is trying to force a move away, this only adds more fuel to the fire. It doesn’t help that Alexis is in high demand with Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus both wanting the player.

 

Now although the situation seems to be blown over the top it does make you think why Alexis decided to walk out of a training session. Was it due to his frustrations on the pitch, due to his teammates being of a much lesser standard or just a clash with the manager?

 

The Telegraph also reported after the match in the same article that if Ozil wasn’t ill, he would have been dropped as well. Which makes you think maybe this is an attitude problem from the big players or whether they are playing up as they don’t have long to go on their contracts and want to force a big move away from the club?

 

Arsenal fans have been craving a player with fight for so long and now that Alexis has come along it looks like he’s the sort of player that Wenger doesn’t want in the squad, someone who will question the manager’s decisions.

Arsenal legend praises Alexis Sanchez

Alexis Sanchez has been praised by Arsenal legend Robert Pires after his 98th minute penalty against Burnley. The Arsenal icon praised the Chilean’s nerve, as he managed to perform a ‘Panenka penalty’ past the Burnley keeper to win the match very late on.

 

The 28 year old’s winner took his goal tally to 17 this season. His goal also managed to see the Gunners move into second place in the Premier League, just behind London rivals Chelsea.

 

This is what the Frenchman had to say about the player:

 

“You have to have balls to take penalties like Alexis,” he said. “He doesn’t know what pressure is.

 

“You have to think that the 98th minute was being played and Arsenal weren’t winning by a three or four goal difference. It was one-one.”

 

Sanchez also discussed his future with Pires, however it still seems like the player hasn’t decided what his future holds:

 

“I spoke to Alexis last week and asked about the renewal,” he said. “He told me he didn’t know, that he only cared to play.

 

“The renewal is not a subject for Alexis. He doesn’t know what is going to happen, he just wants to play and enjoy.

 

“All we want is for Alexis to remain at Arsenal. I hope he renews his contract because he is a wonderful player. Alexis is the engine of the car.

 

“I hope he stays forever.”

French trio sign new Arsenal deals

The Gunners have confirmed that Olivier Giroud, Laurent Koscielny and Francis Coquelin have all signed new deals with the club.

 

Giroud and Koscielny’s contract’s were due to end in the summer of 2018, whereas Coquelin was tied down until 2019.

 

Arsene Wenger has this to say about the players:

 

“We are very pleased that three important members of our team have committed to us for the long term.

“Francis has made tremendous technical strides over the past few years because he’s so focused every day.

“Olivier has big experience in the game now and has become a more and more complete player since joining us.

“Laurent is of course a key part of our squad and I believe one of the best defenders in the world today. So overall, this is great news for us.”

 

Arsenal face a contract crisis at the current time, with the club trying their hardest to tie down Mesut Ozil and Sanchez.

 

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jack Wilshere’s contracts are due to expire and it’s still yet to see whether the club will pursue renewals for the players contracts.

 

Hopefully these three deals will have a knock on effect, with the other Arsenal players following suit  and confirming their future with the Gunners.

Arsenal – Stoke City: Stream and line up

Arsenal host Stoke City in the Premier League this weekend. The North London club are currently in second place in the league, with only 3 points separating them and Chelsea. The Gunners are looking to carry on with their current form, after beating FC Basel midweek with a 4-1 win.

 

Line up:

Starting: Cech, Gabriel, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal, Coquelin, Xhaka, Walcott, Ox, Ozil, Alexis

Subs: Gibbs, Pérez, Giroud, Ospina, Iwobi, Bellerín, Elneny

 

Streams can be found here