[Player Ratings] Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal: A Game Of Two Halves Decided By The Ref
Chelsea beat London rivals Arsenal 2-1 at Stamford Bridge in controversial circumstances on Sunday afternoon. Here are player ratings for both teams from the game
Chelsea beat Arsenal 2-1 at Stamford Bridge in controversial circumstances on Sunday afternoon. The Gunners had the first chance of the game and should have gone ahead when Giroud was put through by Walcott but he fired the ball wide on his preferred left foot.
The Gunners were made to pay when Chelsea took the lead shortly after when Mata fired home but replays showed Arsenal should have had a free kick when Ramires fouled Coquelin in the build up. Arsene Wenger has aggrieved again only 10 minutes later when Szczesny was adjudged to have fouled Ramires in the box but replays showed the Brazilian had ‘bought’ the foul rather than the Polish keeper making contact. Lampard stepped up to make it 2-0.
While Chelsea were fully deserved of their 2-0 lead at half time, there is no question Arsenal can feel aggrieved by both goals. The north Londoners were a different side after the break and got back in the game when Cazorla sent Walcott clear with a lovely through-ball and the England attacker finished superbly for 2-1. Both sides had further chances but no further goals were scored and it finished 2-1 to the Blues.
A draw was probably a fair result on reflection but the big decisions went against Arsenal and Chelsea took home the three points. Here are my player ratings:
Cech – 6 – Good save to deny Cazorla in the first half and was dominant collecting set pieces. Could do nothing for the goal.
Azpilicueta – 6.5 – Given a bit of a run-a-round by Gibbs in the second half but was solid in the opening 45 minutes.
Ivanovic – 7 – Dominant in the air and dealt with the awkward Giroud well.
Cahill – 7 – Superb last ditch tackle denied Walcott a late shot at goal and was generally solid.
Cole – 6 – Solid in the first half but was given a tough time by Walcott in the second. Booked for a cynical foul on Sagna on the edge of the box.
Lampard – 7 – Slotted home his penalty expertly and was an experienced head as the Blues held on.
Ramires – 7 – Hero and villain, depending on how you look at it, but nobody can deny he made a real impact for Chelsea. Full of running and always keen to win the ball back and make things happen.
Mata – 8 – Superb touch and finish for the opener and played his part in the build up to the penalty. Heart of everything good for Chelsea once again.
Hazard – 7.5 -Superb in the first half as he ripped Arsenal to pieces, but was far less effective after the break.
Oscar – 6 -Pretty quiet. Did the simple things well but did nothing special of note.
Torres – 5 – Worked hard but nothing came off for him. Smashed a shot widely over in the first half and poor touch let him down after he put himself through following some good work to beat Vermaelen in the second. Subbed to ironic cheers.
Bertrand – 5 – Made little impact as Benitez tried to nullify the threat of Walcott down the right.
Ba – 6 – Missed a glorious chance to seal the game but couldn’t beat Vermaelen on the line, still proved a much greater threat than Torres though.
Szczesny – 5 – Decent save to deny Hazard early on but could little about with the opener. Poor keeping gave away the penalty, regardless of the ‘dive’ he shouldn’t have made it so easy for Ramires. Went walk about in the second half to allow Ba in on goal but was saved by Vermaelen.
Sagna – 4.5 – Clueless in the first half. Positioning awful for the opener, crossing was terrible as well. Improved after the break. Looks like he doesn’t really care anymore and his contract situation may be playing on his mind.
Gibbs – 7.5 – One of Arsenal’s better players once again. Got up and down the left side and gave his everything.
Vermaelen – 7 – Skinned by Torres twice in the second half but made a superb tackle to stop Ramirez in 2-on-2 situation in second half, and stopped a certain third from Ba with a goal-line block.
Mertesacker – 6 – Like many of his team mates, was poor in the first half but improved in the second half as Arsenal took over. Missed a good chance to pull one back just after half time.
Coquelin – 6 – Put plenty of effort in but you feel he was running around like a headless chicken at times, particularly in the first half. Went off injured.
Wilshere – 7 – Not as effective as he’s been in recent games and dropped deeper in the second half to influence things more.
Diaby – 6 – Still looks well short of match fitness, which is to be expected. Gave away possession cheaply in the build up to the penalty. Subbed.
Cazorla – 7 – Saw little of the ball in the first period but was far more influential in the second. Lovely through-ball for Walcott’s goal.
Walcott – 7 – Needs to time his runs better if he wants to play up front. Caught offside far too often in the first half, but got it right eventually for his well taken goal after the break.
Giroiud – 5 – Vital miss at 0-0. Has to score those chances if he’s to become a top class goal-scorer. Worked hard but lacks real quality where it matters.
Ramsey – 5 – Did some things but lost possession cheaply on a few occasions.
Arshavin – 5 – His introduction shows how weak the Arsenal squad is at the moment. Did little.
What were your player ratings from the game? Get involved in the comments section below.