Player Ratings: Arsenal 2-0 Crystal Palace

Arsenal strolled to a 2-0 victory over struggling Crystal Palace side in a relatively comfortable evening at the Emirates. Olivier Giroud started and finished off a superb Arsenal counter-attack, which saw the Frenchman brilliantly finish with a superb scorpion kick; Alexis Sanchez had initially crossed the ball behind Giroud, but the Frenchman reached his leg behind him to superbly divert the ball off the underside of the bar.

Palace started the second-half with a brilliant chance to equalise, as Christian Benteke rose high above Hector Bellerin to head poorly into the ground. Arsenal soon punished the miss as Alex Iwobi scored a scrappy headed goal after Palace failed to clear the ball. Palace had three chances in the space of five second-half minutes, but could not beat an inspired Petr Cech.

The victory sees Arsenal rise up to 3rd in the Premier League, nine points off leaders Chelsea, with Manchester City dropping out after loss to Liverpool, combined with Spurs winning 4-1 at Watford.

Let’s take a look at the player ratings…


Petr Cech: 7.5/10

Didn’t have much to do for 85 minutes of the game, however, when called into action during a five-minute spell in the second half, the Czech international made superb stops.

Hector Bellerin: 8/10

A constant menace going forward for both the Palace full-back and wingers. Bellerin’s attacking enthusiasm made sure Zaha could not get forward but in fairness, Bellerin had little defending to do the whole game. 

Laurent Koscielny: 6.5/10

Koscielny had a quiet match, as Arsenal managed to dominate for the majority of the game. He had little to do for most of the game, although he did make some key interceptions and blocks. 

Gabriel Paulista: 6.5/10

Likewise, Gabriel was quiet and had very little to no defending to do. An easy game for the Brazilian. 

Nacho Monreal: 7.5/10

His willingness to get forward was apparent as Arsenal kept Palace pinned back inside their own half. Monreal’s runs behind the Palace defence and his balls across the box were brilliant and his defending was solid. A very strong game from the Spaniard. 

Mohamed Elneny: 7/10

The Egyptian was brilliant today, his energy and passing ability is something that separates him from Francis Coquelin, which only helps the Gunners. With Coquelin unable to provide Elneny’s qualities and Cazorla still out, Elneny will be a big miss when he goes to the AFCON Cup.  

Granit Xhaka: 8/10

His passing range is absolutely ridiculous and is much needed in an Arsenal team that sometimes overplays and needs a plan B. Following his big move in the summer, Xhaka has found it hard to settle in but against Palace, he showcased the skills and quality that caused Arsenal to spend £35 million on him. 

Lucas Perez: 6/10

Stuck out on the right flank and had no visible difference on proceedings, by no fault of his own. The Spaniard struggled when asked to play on his right foot, however, with more regular starts Perez will start to shine in the team.

Alex Iwobi: 8/10

Playing in his preferred position with Ozil out, Iwobi created a lot of chances and looked far more comfortable in the 10 spot rather than on the wing. Sometimes Iwobi is guilty of taking a touch too many, something that will develop with age.

Alexis Sanchez: 7.5/10

Apart from the cross, the Chilean was pretty quiet. When playing on the wing, Alexis needs to move the ball quicker, his energy and enthusiasm, however, was still superb. 

Oliver Giroud: 8.5/10

Giroud was brilliant today and was a handful for the Palace defence. His link up play was superb – as was shown in the first goal with his flick to start the move. The goal that capped off the move, was something out of the top draw and will probably be a contender for ‘Goal of the Season’. A  superb performance from the Frenchman, will he start against Bournemouth? 


Francis Coquelin: 6/10

Came on as a second-half sub but had no resal influence on the game. 

Aaron Ramsey: 6/10 

Came on in the 72nd minute but didn’t really do much. 

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain: N/A

Was not on long enough to affect the game. 

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