[Player ratings] Arsenal 2-1 Sheff Utd: Saka & Gabriel impress, Nketiah struggles

By on October 4, 2020

bukayo saka arsenal

Arsenal secured a hard fought 2-1 victory over Sheffield United at the Emirates this afternoon to go into the international break in positive mood.

The first half was uninspiring with clear cut chances at a premium but Arsenal finally broke the deadlock in the 61st minute when Bukayo Saka headed home at the far post following a lovely move.

Arsenal quickly made it 2-0 as substitute Nicolas Pepe curled into the bottom corner with a lovely finish in the 64th minute and it looked like we were cruising to a comfortable win.

However, Sheffield United ensured it was a nervy final 10 minutes as David McGoldrick fired past Bernd Leno from outside the box to make it 2-1 in 83rd minute to give the hosts hope of a point.

Thankfully, Arsenal held on to seal a much-needed 2-1 victory which means we’ve taken nine points from our opening four Premier League games.

Here are my ratings:

Leno  6/10 | Reasonably quiet afternoon. Didn’t have much hope of stopping the goal.

Gabriel  7.5/10 | Another very solid display. Composed presence in defence and was excellent playing out from the back. Made an important late intervention to prevent a Sheffield United shot on goal.

Luiz  5.5/10 | Mistake almost let Oli Burke through on goal early on and was perhaps fortunate to get away with a slight shirt pull on the striker. Improved a bit in the second half but could have closed down more for their goal.

Tierney  7/10 | Solid at the back and saw a bit more of him going forward which was nice to see. Put a few decent crosses in the box.

Bellerin  7.5/10 | A real threat down the right flank and set-up the opener with a fine cross for Saka. Got the assist for Pepe’s goal too.


Ceballos  7/10 | Disappointing opening 45 minutes as he didn’t do enough to get the team moving but much better after the break when he showed urgency and was involved in everything.

Elneny  6.5/10 | Another steady display but still far too limited to be a regular for Arsenal. Sat and did the dirty work but it’s all too slow for me.

Saka  7.5/10 | Opened the scoring with a lovely far post header. Linked up with Tierney and Aubameyang at times and was influential in much of Arsenal’s good play.

Willian  5.5/10 | Fairly disappointing. Showed no real intent to make things happen from the right-wing. Improved a bit when he played more centrally once Pepe was introduced.

Aubameyang  6/10 | Had no real sight of goal and couldn’t influence the game from the left wing. More involved when moved into the middle and played his part in the opening goal. Picked up an ankle injury in the first half. Was able to continue but didn’t look totally comfortable.

Nketiah  5/10 | Frustrating afternoon. Very little in terms of service. Wasted the only half-chance he had in the first half. Subbed early in the second half.


Pepe   7/10 | Great impact. Scored a wonderful goal minutes after coming on after curling into the bottom corner.

Xhaka   6/10 | On to help shore things up in the last 10 minutes.

Maitland-Niles   5/10 | Almost gifted them a late equaliser with a poor clearance.

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