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[PLAYER RATINGS] Henry 1-0 Leeds: The King Is Back….

Arsenal 1-0 Leeds. Theirry Henry returned to Arsenal, coming off the bench to score a memorable second half winner. Here’s player ratings from the game.

Thierry Henry Leeds 2012

What. A. Night. Every Arsenal fan will remember this game, when ‘King’ Henry returned to roll back the years and show Arsenal what they’ve been missing for the last 5 years. It was a moment that dreams were made of.

But lets get it right, Henry’s finish was pure class. One touch to perfectly set it up for a trademark finish into the bottom corner. Timeless. Without un-neccessarily having a dig at the guy, Chamakh could only dream of a ‘one-touch & finish’ like that. The Moroccan should ask for someone to tape Henry during training sessions while he’s away so he can watch the footage when he’s back and learn a few things.

The game was largely a forgettable affair until the 68th minute when Henry was summoned from the bench to replace the once-again hapless Chamakh. Within 10 minutes the greatest player to have played in this country made an intelligent run, took one touch and stroked the ball home to send the Emirates wild. Henry himself celebrated like a 16-year-old kid, it was amazing.

Away from the Henry-show, Arsenal were pretty disappointing. The first 20 minutes were good, we looked like we were going to cut through Leeds at will. Arshavin was seeing a lot of the ball and Arteta and Ramsey were bossing the midfield. But the tempo dropped and Leeds grew in confidence.

In all honesty, it was hard to see where a goal was coming from before Henry’s introduction. We had chances but the finishing was again poor. Arshavin and Ramsey were two of the guilty parties. Things need to improve in this department. But for this game it didn’t matter as the King came off the bench to show how it’s done. Here are my player ratings.

Player Ratings:

Szczesny – 6.5 – Like any good goalkeeper, Szczesny did nothing for 89 minutes then produced a decent save when called upon in the final minute.

Coquelin – 6.5 – Looked lively until being forced off after half an hour with a hamstring injury. Yet another full back ruled out. Unbelievable bad luck for Arsenal and Coquelin.

Squillaci – 6.5 – I can’t believe i’m going to say this, but Squillaci was ok. Sure Leeds hardly tested the back line, but the Frenchman didn’t make a mistake! Great stuff.

Koscielny – 7 – Another assured display from Koscielny. Nothing spectacular but dealt with everything and kept Squillaci in check.

Miquel – 7.5 – Very impressive performance from the youngster. Really happy for him. He slotted in at left back and did very well. He’ll have far stiffer tests but looked composed and got forward on occasion as well.

Song – 6.5 – Quite game from Alex. He made a few clumsy challenges and sloppy passes but the important pass he made to perfection, assisting for Henry’s winner.

Arteta – 7 – Was very good for the opening half hour but faded slightly. Kept the ball moving through midfield and got stuck in when required. Set pieces were slightly disappointing.

Ramsey – 7.5 – A very busy performance from Ramsey. He ran his heart out once again, but not for the first time this season, he forgot his shooting boots. He really needs some shooting practice, maybe have a word with Thierry, Rambo?

Chamberlain – 7.5 – I love this kid. He’s not afraid to shoot and was unlucky with a rasping drive in the second half. His crossing is better than Theo’s already. Oxe just needs to get in the game more (much like Walcott) and demand the ball. Too many times his team-mates didn’t pass to him. Deserves more first team game time now Arsene! Was harshly subbed.

Arshavin – 7.5 – much better from Arshavin. He made far more effort than in previous games and ran at his full-back on several occasions. Sure, it wasn’t always successful but at least he was trying again. His finishing was poor but that will come with confidence.

Chamakh – 5 – Poor, again. Didn’t hold the ball up and lay-offs hardly found a team mate. I wont miss him for the next 6 weeks. A half fit, 34-yar-old, one-legged Henry is far more useful than Chamakh. Subbed for the great man who did more in 10 minutes than Marouanne has done all season.


Yennaris – 6.5 – Good stuff from the relatively unknown youngster. He came on for the injured Coquelin and acquitted himself very well. Was fazed by the occasion at all.

Walcott – 6 – Over-shadowed by his hero Henry. Theo didn’t see much of the ball during his 25 minutes on the field.

HENRY – 10 – On for 10 minutes and produced a moment of pure class to win the game. Written in the stars for him and his celebration sent goosebumps down the spine. The King is truly back. (OK, maybe a 10 is a tad over-the-top but come on, can you blame me?!)

So they’re my player ratings from a memorable game. Remember, they are only my opinion and you’re welcome to leave yours in the comments section below.



  1. Michael Steyn

    January 10, 2012 at 9:23 am

    10 for Henry ? Come on mate , you have my permission to give him a 20 🙂

  2. Matt

    January 10, 2012 at 9:30 am

    I think your ratings are too harsh. 10 for Henry? He deserves much more than that

  3. hingo

    January 10, 2012 at 10:16 am

    I think all your ratings are really good but i would love to see the match stats for pass completion from Arshavin. i agree he tried a little harder, but nearly every time he was given the ball he lost it, thereby putting us back on the backfoot. You expect 70% completion rate from a good pro, but from him got about 20%. Way off the mark. and no composure with his wild finishing!
    i would give 4.5! again!

  4. Chris

    January 10, 2012 at 10:42 am

    Thierry was on a 9 rating when he was on the bench 😉 10 when he ran on 😛

  5. worthingwhite

    January 10, 2012 at 11:10 am

    For God sake what game were u lot watching? Arsharvin 7.5, Chamberlain 7.5, and u wanna give Henry a 20! get a life. Our team of boys had ur lot in our back pocket for 80mins. Then yes a good finish from Henry. But was was all that celebration about when scoring and at full time. Talk about a drama queen. a complte french once. Arsenal will win absolutley nothing with that team even with the few players they had missing. But dont forget the players we had out injured to.

  6. Family Enclosure Man

    January 10, 2012 at 11:28 am

    Agree with most of this, but event though Oxo was bright and lively it is ludicrous to say that his crossing is already better than Walcott’s: he hit a couple of woeful crosses from the right when he had plenty time to do better. I’m not turning against him – he’s a hugely exciting prospect – but let’s keep it in perspective. I really liked the look of Yennaris, incidentally: chunky, compact, competitive and nippy. Reminded me of Lee Dixon a bit.

  7. Jimmy king

    January 10, 2012 at 11:48 am

    It’s hard to believe that Ramsey gets away with such school not football all the time. Is it because he’s British?

  8. Jimmy king

    January 10, 2012 at 11:48 am

    It’s hard to believe that Ramsey gets away with such school boy football all the time. Is it because he’s British?

  9. dude

    January 10, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    Yennaris is a diamond in the rough

  10. dude

    January 10, 2012 at 12:51 pm

    Ramsey please take this once in a lifetime chance to learn how to shoot from the king himself

  11. dude

    January 10, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Ox deserves more playing time

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