The Gunners left it late once again, as Alexis Sanchez scored the winning goal in the 89th minute of the match to get Arsenal within three points of third place Southampton. Arsenal mostly dominated many of the categories throughout the match, but goalkeeper Fraser Forster was absolutely outstanding for the Saints and kept his team in the match until the very end.
Here are the player ratings from the Wednesday evening match in north London.
Emi Martinez – 7. The young Arsenal goalkeeper has kept clean sheets in all three starts that he has been given since Wojciech Szczesny went down with an injury. Martinez is looking like a very solid third option between the posts for the Gunners.
Calum Chambers – 7.5. Chambers, a former Southampton player, made a few nice tackles and clearances throughout the match. The defender also sent some decent crosses into the box.
Per Mertesacker – 6.5. The BFG had a quiet match, which is usually a good thing for a defender. Mertesacker didn’t do anything outstanding, but also didn’t commit any errors either.
Laurent Koscielny – 7. Arsenal is a different team when Koscielny in the side. He had yet another good match, highlighted by a massive block in the 50th minute.
Nacho Monreal – 6.5. Decent match for Monreal. While it looked like he would have to be substituted off inside of five minutes, the Spaniard went on to have a very stable match at the left-back position.
Mathieu Flamini – 6.5. The Frenchman’s positioning was outstanding and made a couple of interceptions in the match. Flamini was also composed, as he played a full 90 minutes without receiving a yellow card.
Aaron Ramsey – 6. Despite a fairly lackluster performance overall, Ramsey provided the assist on the game-winning goal from Alexis.
Santi Cazorla – 7.5. Cazorla continued his run of solid play (third match in a row), underlined by an exceptional through ball to Danny Welbeck in the 7th minute.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 7. Good movement and distribution from the Ox. He was taken off in the 65th minute for Olivier Giroud, but probably deserved to continue on the pitch.
Alexis Sanchez – 8. Worked hard throughout the game (nothing new there) and ended up scoring the only goal of the match in the 89th minute.
Danny Welbeck – 6.5. Welbeck had a bit of an up and down match. He showed good movement and pace, but couldn’t quite finish when needed. (Quote of the match from the game announcer following an errant pass from the forward, “Welbeck passes the ball to a phantom.”
Olivier Giroud – 6.5. Giroud came on in the 65th minute and made an immediate impact on the match. Giroud delivered an outstanding pass to set up a Webeck chance; however, it was ultimately pawed away by the Southampton goalkeeper.
Lukas Podolski – 6. Podolski entered the match with about eight minutes left on the clock. The German couldn’t produce anything spectacular in his limited time on the pitch.
Fraser Forster – 8.5 (MotM). Forster made four quality saves throughout the match. Of the four, none were more impressive than the sprawling stop from a great scoring opportunity from Welbeck in the 69th minute.
Nathaniel Clyne – 7. The youngster has been outstanding all season for the Saints, and he more than held his own against Alexis and the other Arsenal forwards.
Jose Fonte – 6.5. Fonte had a solid match in Southampton’s central defense, despite continuous bombardment from the Arsenal offense.
Toby Alderweireld – 6.5. The Belgian was good once again, but did receive a yellow card and was forced to leave the pitch due to a hamstring injury with just five minutes to go in the match.
Ryan Bertrand – 6.5. The Chelsea player has proved that he is capable to play the left-back position in the Premier League. Bertrand composed himself well throughout the match.
Victor Wanyama – 7. Wanyama provided a great defensive contribution to his team, but did pick up a yellow card following a string of questionable fouls.
Steven Davis – 6. Davis’s name was not called much during the match, but the 29-year-old did make a few nice contributions on the ball in the middle of the pitch.
Jack Cork – 5. Cork was substituted off in the 29th minute due to injury.
Dusan Tadic – 6. Tadic could not make much of an impact during the game and was replaced after an hour on the pitch.
Shane Long – 6. Long’s pace gave Arsenal’s defense fits at times, but he missed a golden opportunity to cross the ball to an open Pelle in the 51st minute. Long contributed 80 minutes before he was replaced.
Graziano Pelle – 6. Pelle should have probably scored inside 15 minutes, but he sent the ball (from a great headed pass) well over the post from six yards out.
Maya Yoshida – 6. The defender entered the game in the first half and made a decent impact on the Southampton side of the pitch.
Sadio Mane – 5.5. Mane played the last 30 minutes of the game, but could not create anything offensively for the Saints.
Emmanuel Mayuka – 6. The pacey forward only played the last 10 minutes or so. Despite some decent counter attacking opportunities for Southampton late, Mayuka could not capitalize on the opportunities.
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