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[Player Ratings] Fulham 0-1 Arsenal: Terrible Performance But Big 3 Points Secured

Arsenal laboured to a 1-0 win over Fulham at Craven Cottage on Saturday despite playing against 10-men for almost the entire game. Here are player ratings.

Arsenal laboured to a 1-0 win over Fulham at Craven Cottage on Saturday afternoon despite playing against 10-men for almost the entire game. Here are player ratings from Arsenal fan ‘Lloyd the Gooner’.

Olivier_Giroud Arsenal

Giroud – Stupid dismissal

We really never make things easy for ourselves, do we? Sidwell’s dismissal in the 12th minute should have ensured a straightforward three points today but we barely got out of first gear and Fulham arguably created the better chances throughout the game.

The players clearly thought they had the game won and could just pass the ball about in midfield and the goals would take care of themselves. Of course that wasn’t to be the case and we struggled to create anything of note. It really was a dreadful display from the Gunners. It needed a close range header from Per Mertesacker to settle the game just before half time and we ended up hanging on for the win as Fulham got more adventurous late on.

They had a goal correctly ruled out for offside before Olivier Giroud ensured it would be a nervy final few minutes after seeing red for a late tackle. A needless act from the big Frenchman who now misses our next three games. But we hung on to secure a vital win and despite the poor display, the three points were all that mattered today. Here are my ratings:

Szczesny – 7.5 – Arguably our best player. Made a decent save from Berbatov in 20th minute to keep it at 0-0 and kept his concentration well throughout. Tipped over a Ruiz cross-come-shot in the second half and was assured at coming for the ball.

Sagna – 6.5 – Offered little going forward and when he did venture into the final third his crossing once again was poor. But stood firm at the back and did his part in keeping Fulham at bay.

Mertesacker – 7.5 – I’ll give him the MOTM award as his goal was priceless and he was also a rock at the back for the most part. On hand to get the all-important winner just before half time, heading home from close range and also made several key interceptions and clearances.

Koscielny – 7 – His header across goal set up Per for the winning goal and continued his fine partnership with the big German at the back.

Monreal – 7 – Vital, match-winning tackle in the dying minutes to deny Fulham a clear goal-scoring opportunity. Caught out a couple of times early on as Emanuelson gave him problems though.

Arteta – 6 – On the end of a poor tackle from Sidwell early on that saw the Fulham man sent off. Harshly booked for ‘foul’ on Emanuelson but replays showed the Fulham man dived. Was tidy in possession but looked tired to me. Didn’t really take control of the game from midfield as he should have done.

Ramsey – 6.5 – Busy performance as usual. Wasted a great chance to make it 2-0 in the final minute but dragged his shot wide and gave away too many silly free-kicks.

Cazorla – 5 – Well below par from the little Spaniard. You’d have thought with the man advantage this would have been the perfect game for Cazorla to pass them into submission but he looked jaded and was well off his game. Hopefully the rest before United will see him recover.

Rosicky – 5 – Generally very quiet. Was tidy when in possession but didn’t have his usual spark that we’ve seen of late. Didn’t look match-fit to me. Subbed.

Walcott – 4 – Anonymous. Saw an early goal correctly ruled out for offside and barely saw the ball after that. He did set up the winner with a decent deep cross just before half time but was rightly subbed in the second period after a poor afternoon’s work.

Giroud – 4 – Was woeful before his needless sending off. Touch was off all game, wasn’t getting himself involved in the build-up play and while a lack of service could be blamed at times, he wasn’t even putting the effort in like he usually does. He did hit the post in the 35th minute from a tight angle but otherwise he was awful. Now misses our next three games after a reckless tackle in the final minute.


Wilshere – 6 – Couple of sloppy passes but at least he added a little urgency to midfield.

Podolski – 5 – Little impact but looks like he may get a chance to impress up front in the coming weeks.

Vermaelen – N/A

If you missed the game or want to relive the action, you can watch highlights including Mertesackers goal and the two dismissal’s here.

The win moves us back up to third and now the pressure is fully on Tottenham and Chelsea ahead of their games with Man City and Liverpool on Sunday. Let’s hope at least one of our rivals drop some points! COYG

What were your ratings from the game? Get involved in the comments section below.

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