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Theo MotM? Player Ratings v Chelsea

By Matty Sadler
September 24 2016

Right up there with Man United at home last season in terms of best 45 minutes in recent years. We made Chelsea look second best all over the park, kept Costa quiet, dominated the midfield and punished their defensive errors.

Arsenal took the lead after Alexis capitalised on a mistake from Cahill and finished confidently, and doubled it after a slick passing move led to Bellerin squaring the ball for the hardworking Walcott to tap home. Chelsea grew into the half and had a few good opportunities, but we defended well before Ozil started and finished a counterattack with Alexis brilliantly to make it 3-0 at half-time. The second half wasn't quite so spectacular but the Gunners dealt with Chelsea's attacks very well and had a few good opportunities to add to our half-time lead, which we didn't take. In the end, a brilliant result against one of our bogey sides. A great performance, three goals, a massive clean sheet and a boost for the rest of the season. Get in!

A few talking points from me...

Mustafi has been a brilliant signing so far. With his composure and quality on the ball he looks like the perfect successor for Mertesacker, plus the Mustafi - Koscielny partnership has been very good so far. Those two did a great job on one of the biggest thorns in our sides in recent years today.

The penny appears to have finally dropped for Theo Walcott. Last season, particularly after Christmas, he looked disinterested like he didn't give a toss, but this season he appears to have had an attitude transplant. Superb today.

hahanice made the point in the match thread during the game. For years we have wanted Wenger to spend money and today we saw why. We finally have a top drawer centre back to partner Koscielny. If Coquelin had got injured last year, we'd have had either the inadequate Flamini or the crocked Arteta coming on to replace him. Today, we had a quality player in Xhaka who is more than good enough to start for either side. Our squad looks good with quality and depth in all positions.

Cech - 7. Called into action a couple of times in the first half but always looked comfortable. Made one comfortable save from distance in the second half before a quality one-on-one stop from Batshuayi.

Bellerin - 8. Defended well and always made himself available going forward. Good movement and pass to Walcott for his goal. Showed his electric pace to fly back and tackle Pedro after a mix-up between Mustafi and Koscielny.
Mustafi - 8. Very good. Comfortable in possession, worked well with Koscielny (bar one mix-up) and did a job on Costa.
Koscielny - 8. Very good again. Worked well with Mustafi (bar one mix-up) and did a job on Costa.
Monreal - 7. More like the Monreal of last season. Did well to keep a quality player like Willian quiet. Nitpicking but Chelsea had a lot of space down our left in the second half though, something he and Iwobi need to sort out.

Coquelin - 6. Started really well until his unfortunate injury. Fingers crossed it isn't a bad one.
Cazorla - 8. Quietly efficient as he kept things ticking over today.

Walcott - 9. My Man of the Match. Scored and got through more defensive work today than he probably has in the last 10 years. Tracked back, closed down, harried and tackled. Penny finally dropped?
Ozil - 9. Ran the show. Great one-two with Iwobi for Walcott's goal. Quality turn on Kante and clever finish for his goal. Chelsea couldn't handle his off the ball movement.
Iwobi - 8. Always uses the ball so well. Quality through ball to Bellerin for Walcott's goal. Clever off the ball movement throughout. Nitpicking but Chelsea had a lot of space down our left in the second half though, something he and Monreal need to sort out.

Alexis - 9. Didn't give Chelsea's defence a moment's rest and linked up well with those around him. Great finish for his goal. Quality movement and cross for Ozil's goal.


Xhaka - 7. Slow-ish start but grew into the game and did well in the end. I enjoyed the constant "shoot!" shouts from the home fans as well.
Gibbs - 7. Defended well and put in a few very good crosses.
Giroud - N/A. Not on long.

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