So we're out of the Champions League again after losing on away goals, in a rather predictable fashion. As I said in the immediate reaction post, all the criticism the team gets should only be for the first leg calamity. Yes, I know we are all sick of saying 'it was a good performance in the 2nd leg' and what have you, but the fact is that it was a very good away performance, but we just gave ourselves too much to do. The team gave everything to get the result they needed, and were unlucky in the end. We had our chances but couldn't take them, so we are out. Now we have to bring our focus back to Newcastle in the Premier League run in. Here's how I rated the players from last night's game;
Ospina-7- Had literally nothing to do in the game, can't really add anything more.
Bellerin-7- Another good run out for the young right back. He was was targeted a bit with long balls as that really isn't his strong suit. He defended reasonably well, and his speed in behind was always a threat.
Mertesacker-7- Once again Per was solid and has responded excellently to the criticism he received from the first leg. He completed an excellent 97% of his passes.
Koscielny-8.5-MOTM--One of our best players on the night, which is unusual to say about a central defender when Monaco offered nothing by the way of attacking intent at all. He really is getting back to his best.
Monreal-7.5- Again he was excellent. Defended well on the rare occasion he was asked to and got in some great attacking positions, for some reason the Arsenal players had soemething against using the left hand side all night. Great ball across the box for Ramsey's goal.
Coquelin-7- I thought he was having another solid game, but was seacrificed for the more attacking Ramsey.
Cazorla-7.75- He had a good solid game, and was involved a lot. According to Opta, he made a huge 121 passes, which is a record for an Arsenal player in one Champions League game since Opta record that data in 2003/04. i would have gave him an 8, but he was sometimes a little slow on the ball for my liking, but hey, what do I know?
Sanchez-6- Nothing came off for him last night. His worst game in an Arsenal shirt and needs a rest in my opinion. Was booking for diving.
Ozil-7.5- I thought he had another good game last night. The criticism of him is beyond ridiculous, it makes me wonder what kind of people thought he was before we signed him. Let's hope he keeps his form up.
Welbeck-6.75- He was involved quite a bit last night and In fairness he looked dangerous, but he just kept over running the ball and his first touch was off. He seems to have gone a bit backwards since the start of the season. I know this rating will divide opinion as I saw a lot of people thought he had a very good game.
Giroud-7.5- He looked very good again tonight although he did seem to be involved more in the first half. His finish for the first goal was excellent, but got in the way of Sanchez adding that third. Been great since his return from injury and the over reaction nonsense after the first leg.
Ramsey-7.25- He made a big impact when he cam on and scored a very good goal. I'm still not sure why he didn't start last night (I would have started him for Welbeck, if you're wondering).
Walcott-5.75- I thought he was easily the worst player on the pitch. Even when Sanchez has a bad game, he offers a lot more. I can't (and do not want to) see Walcott getting back into the team for a sustained period. He Offered nothing when he came on, unless you stretch it and say he set Ramsey up through hitting the post?
Gibbs-6.5- Came on to add some extra pace and fresh legs on the Left Hand side but had no real impact. At one point he seemed to pass the ball to Ramsey, inside the box surrounded by Monaco players. In fairness he wasn't on for too long, but I would keep Monreal in the team.
Right that's your lot for now, keep an eye out for more. Let me know what you think in the comments, was I too harsh on Welbeck and Walcott? Was I too generous to Koscielny?
Subjectively, Cosmic Kid.
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