[Player Ratings] Arsenal 3-2 Aston Villa: What A Comeback….

By on January 29, 2012

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Arsenal produced seven minutes of ‘power-play’ football to seal a stunning second half comeback and beat Aston Villa 3-2 at the Emirates.

After Richard Dunne and Darren Bent had put Villa 2-0 up at half time, the Gunners came storming out the blocks after the break and scored three goals in seven minutes thanks to a Van Persie double (both penalties) and a lucky Walcott effort.

The first half was both wasteful and unfortunate. Both sides had chances to score but Villa took two of their opportunities, while Arsenal wasted all of theirs. That’s football i guess, but we were unlucky to be 2-0 down at the break in my opinion.

But whatever Arsene Wenger said at half time definitely worked as we came out with new vigour in the second half and pummelled Villa in to submission. But the most pleasing addition to our play was the desire to close villa down when in possession and win the ball back. If only Arsenal could play with that intensity all the time!

The defence looked far more composed in the second half, while the midfield and attack were showing more desire to make things happen and there was far more movement off the ball. Lets take that in to the Bolton game on Wednesday please.

Aside from booking our place in the fifth round of the FA Cup and sealing an away trip to face either Sunderland or Middlesborough, the good news from the game was the return of Bacary Sagna. It was great to see him Bac (sorry, couldn’t resist) and we’re now closing in on having our first choice defence available. Hopefully that can be the catalyst for a great second half to the season.

It was far from a vintage display from Arsenal, but it was a great cup game and a superb, and unexpected, comeback. Here are my ratings:

Fabianski – 5 – Looked suspect whenever the ball entered the box. Flapped at a couple of crosses and always looks ‘on edge’ for some reason. Doesn’t fill me with any confidence when he’s in goal.

Coquelin – 7 – An energetic display and got forward on occasion. Needs to work on his positioning a little though, but he looks like he could have a good future at the Emirates.

Mertesacker – 6.5 – Caught well out of position for the attack that lead to Villa’s first. But otherwise had a decent game.

Koscielny – 7.5 – I thought he should maybe have attacked the cross with more aggression for Villas opener, but apart from that Kos was once again Arsenal’s best defender. He’s improved so much he’s almost unrecognisable from the player of last season.

Vermaelen – 7 – A better display than last week against United, getting forward more and he almost scored a wonder goal with a thunderous strike early on.

Song – 6.5 – Broke up play well, especially in the second half. Wasn’t involved in the attacking play as much as usual, which is a plus for me as i think he should be sticking to his defensive midfield duties more.

Rosicky – 6.5 – Looks like he’s getting fitter by the game and seems to have gained a yard of pace from somewhere, but too often he lacks penetration and had a couple of weak shots.

Ramsey – 8 – Poor first half, but superb in the second as his energy and drive helped turn the game around. Nice run lead to the first penalty. Still needs to work on his shooting and finishing though.

Walcott – 6.5 – Nice work lead to the equaliser, which will go down as a Walcott goal but was very fortunate, but another fairly average display by Theo overall. Poor crosses and not enough penetration.

Chamberlain – 7 – Faired better than Walcott, Oxe looks more composed and in control of the ball when in possession. Made a few wrong decisions on when to pass or shoot, but he skinned his marker on a few occasions and put in a couple of dangerous crosses.

Van Persie – 8.5 – Two expertly taken penalties, but his all round game was excellent. Eager for the ball and along with Ramsey was the driving force behind the comeback.

SUBS:

Arteta – 6.5 – Added fluidity to the midfield as we tried to see out the game. Great to have him back.

Sagna & Henry – Only on for a matter of minutes, but Thierry fluffed a chance to shoot while Sagna saw little of the ball. Not enough time to warrant a rating for either though.

If you haven’t seen the goals, or want to relive things, watch video highlights from Arsenal 3-2 Aston Villa

Those are my ratings, feel free to leave your own ratings and opinions in the comments section below….

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17 Comments

  1. Zax

    January 29, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    On which ground did u give Ramsey an 8!!!! clearly, we must have been watching a different game. Ramsey’s pace, dribbling, shooting and clinical passing are all suboptimal… The creativity that we once had has vanished as he doesn’t push the ball beyond the midfield to provide an assist…we need a Wilshere and E hazard in the middle.

  2. Thundetinygooner

    January 29, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Koscielny won the second penalty. I thought Ramsey ,Walcott and Rosicky all upped their game in the second half and Coquelin did extremely well.We now ave two reserve midfielder who are better right backs than Djourou

  3. Tim

    January 29, 2012 at 10:00 pm

    Rosicky shone today. He’s grown over the last few games and almost looks his old self. never a 6.5

    • GUnners

      January 30, 2012 at 3:22 am

      Yes, he deserves al least a seven

    • Byron

      January 30, 2012 at 6:39 am

      spot on mate I think Rambo needs a break and Rosicky and Arteta will boss the midfield

  4. Sandman

    January 29, 2012 at 10:31 pm

    How did Ramsay get an 8?? How do you guys not see that he does not keep possession. Rosicky had penetrating runs in the second half, showed smarts … Ramsay running around like a chicken with his head cut off and you give him a 8?? I would have been pissed if I were Rosicky for coming off when Ramsay stayed on.

  5. atid

    January 29, 2012 at 10:45 pm

    I thought ramsey was our best pla er in the second half and fqbianski and mertesacker aside our worst in the.first half. i dont know why everyone is so on this kid at 20 years old he has carried our offence from midfield all yeason. for me the.back 4 of bac per kos and tv5 is our first choice. unless we sign someone like samba baines vertonghen (preferably all 3) then i expect that to be our first choice. fabianski is appaling and has to go whilst u can see that henry is finished at the top. i know we wont sign anyone till the summer now but that will cost us.

  6. lolwut

    January 29, 2012 at 11:36 pm

    what were u watching.

    our best player by far was chamberlain.

    the only one springing forward to attack at pace with trickery, van persie other than the penalty did er? nothing of note?

    and ramsey… not even gonna ask where u got that rating from, you must be welsh.

  7. Olasunkanmi Abbey

    January 29, 2012 at 11:55 pm

    Arsenal realy show a great strength in the second half,kudos to song in the midfield just like attacker his pass make us see the two penalty,I don’t no y arsen wenger always keep ramsey.

  8. Ilias

    January 30, 2012 at 12:55 am

    Ramsey was the man of the match to me. You guys must have been watching a different match. He (Ramsey) a few mistakes in the first half but his momentum and work rate won us the match. Koscielny has grown to be our best defender this season and I hope he becomes our new Tony Adams

  9. Besi

    January 30, 2012 at 1:39 am

    Come on fans,we were as a team perfect,all they played well,you not mention mertesacker,he was brilliant in air,,general all team in second half played superb,

  10. Jay

    January 30, 2012 at 1:47 am

    Well…Kos won us the penalty…Not Verminator… LOL…Ramsey was ok…Wasted a couple of chances…but he won us the penalty…For me Roc7 was superb…He kept on running and winning the ball all the time….Hope he stays with us and stays fit as well…Dont put too much hope on chamberlian yet guys…We dont want him to end up as a Walcott….Anyway I like Walcott because of his pace…Just waiting for the Milan game to see what Wenger will do…And finally…We are not buying any players AGAIN!!!!

    • RVP10

      January 30, 2012 at 10:51 am

      Haha, oh yeah. Sorry, error has been corrected!

  11. tanasi

    January 30, 2012 at 5:06 am

    AAm surprised that the value of Song in the match has not been fairly recognised. It is his two timely passes that led to the penalties. It is one thing to run around with the ball and look exciting, and another to make use of the ball. Arsenal is lacks a player who can make the decisive passes in the final third, yet this is necessary for a team that does not make good use of wing play. For me the only player who seems to be able to make decisive passes in the final third is Song as shown yesterday, though this is not his primary role. If you want to confirm what am stating, check the assist statistics and u will be surprised how Song well in this area. For the assist contribution in yesterdays match, I would certainly rate song more than u do.

  12. tanasi

    January 30, 2012 at 5:06 am

    Am surprised that the value of Song in the match has not been fairly recognised. It is his two timely passes that led to the penalties. It is one thing to run around with the ball and look exciting, and another to make use of the ball. Arsenal is lacks a player who can make the decisive passes in the final third, yet this is necessary for a team that does not make good use of wing play. For me the only player who seems to be able to make decisive passes in the final third is Song as shown yesterday, though this is not his primary role. If you want to confirm what am stating, check the assist statistics and u will be surprised how Song well in this area. For the assist contribution in yesterdays match, I would certainly rate song more than u do.

  13. ray

    January 30, 2012 at 7:58 am

    if anything this game shows us is that we need more urgency all over the pitch. Winning the ball back early is the key. Hurry defenders and midfielders into mistakes. We done this for 15 minutes in the second half and shows how good we could be. But there is just not enough of it. This is how Barca do it. They hunt you down early, force the mistake then take advantage of the possession. As Arsenal fans I think we all need a heart monitor present at all times as they do play with our emotions!!! Lol

  14. martins

    January 30, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    I don’t agree wit u 4 rating Rambo above Song,and i think Tom had a good game too.

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