West Ham vs Arsenal Player Ratings

Emmanuel Money Bags Adebayor Proves To Be Too Much To Handle

Emmanuel "Money Bags" Adebayor Proves To Be Too Much To Handle

Arsenal traveled across London this weekend to take on city rivals West Ham United in what was a very hard fought victory at Upton Park.  A scoreless first half saw Arsenal come out from the break determined to find the breakthrough.  Despite the heroics of Robert Green, Arsenal found a way through off of a Faubert own goal.  Arsenal we able to hang on to advantage until stoppage time when a sublime pass from Bendtner  put Adebayor in on goal to double the advantage and sure up the three points for the visitors.

Almunia: 8 Fantastic first half from the Spaniard who made a few fantastic saves, including a great one on Bellamy.  Almunia seems to really be growing into his roll this season and as someone who has never been particularly impressed by Almunia he really is becoming a solid keeper.

Eboue: 6.5 Not the greatest game for Eboue.  He was slopping in the attacking third but solid enough in defense.  I still think he plays better as a right back.

Gallas: 8 Great game by Gallas, one of the few good games I can remember him having in an Arsenal shirt.  He dealt well with the Hammer’s attackers all evening and played some fantastic one on one defense.  Lets all hope that our Captain keeps up this form for many games to come.

Silvestre: 7.5 Played very well next to Gallas.  He is still getting used to our system but the Frenchman seems to be fitting in quite well.

Clichy: 7.5 Showed great willingness to get forward but was outpaced by Bellamy in the first half.  All in all though it was a typical Clichy performance, as solid as ever.

Walcott: 8 Theo was brilliant on the night.  His pace and ability to launch Arsenal into attack with the snap of a finger caused West Ham trouble all night long.  He put some nice balls into the middle and showed a great willingness to fight down the right and to get into scoring positions in the box.  He was unlucky not to score when he fired off the crossbar.

Fabregas: 7.5 Fairly good performance from the Spaniard.  He controlled the midfield well and seemed to work much better next to Song then next to Denilson.  He had a few passes get away from him but over all he showed great determination to orchestrate the attack as Arsenal searched for a winner.

Song: 8 A so-so first half combined with an amazing second half completed what is most likely Song’s best game for the Gunners to date.  He was fantastic getting back in defense and halting any sort of offense the Hammers got going and was good in the final third as well.  He showed good decision making in his passing and some fantastic skill on the ball as well.  I hope this game will give Song a prolonged run out at the defensive midfield position.

Nasri: 7 Quite game from Samir but continued to link up well with Clichy down the right.  I have been really impressed with the Frenchman’s skill and strength on the ball and I look forward to seeing Nasri continue to adapt and fit into the side.

van Persie: 7.5 Looked for goal often and came close on three or four occasions.  It looks like Robin’s free kick ability is starting to return as she rattled on off the upright.  He worked the keeper well and played some nice balls between the rest of the team, especially his chest down to an oncoming Walcott in the box.

Bendtner: 7.5 A performance the young Dane can certainly be proud of.  The game did not come easy to him the whole 90 minutes but Nick worked hard and linked up well with his team mates.  He played some excellent balls into the box and even worked the keeper on on occasion.  His ball to Adebayor for the second though was absolutely fantastic.  Suffice to say, I believe Bendtner is coming along quite nicely and gives Arsenal another solid option up top.

Subs:

Adebayor: 8.5 Made all the difference.  His willingness to fight for every ball was very clear and his hard work paid off early as some fancy footwork and a shot toward goal helped Arsenal find the breakthrough as Adebayor bounced a shot off of a West Ham Defender and into the back of the net.  His link up with the rest of the team was great and his goal was superbly taken.

Diaby: 7 Showed some nice link up and some fancy footwork but ultimately didn’t make that much of an impact on the match.

Sagna: N/A

Man of the Match: Adebayor has certainly added another dimension to his game this season.  The way he links up and interacts with the other players on the pitch gives us something we didn’t have last year.  His pace and physicality have become huge problems for Premier League defenders and his 8 goals in all competitions have helped Arsenal keep it close in the opening months of the BPL and the Champions League.

Arsenal vs Porto Player Ratings

Who needs Batman when youve got Robin?

Who needs Batman when you've got Robin?

Arsenal took on FC Porto the other night and won with style as the Gunners slammed four goals past the visitors.  Despite a shaky first 20 minutes, Arsenal took the lead in the 32nd minute and never looked back.  The scoreline could’ve reached Slavia Prague proportions if not for some profligate finishing. Here are Arsenal Station’s player ratings:

Almunia: 7.5 Not too much to do from Almunia but there when called upon.  He made a fantastic save in the first half to prevent Porto from taking the early lead which could’ve led to a very different result.

Sagna: 7.5 Solid as usual for Bakary.  He was tidy in defense, made some good tackles and recovered well when beat.  He was again a vital part of the Arsenal attack as he got forward and provided crosses and link up with the other attacking players.

Toure: 6.5 Decent game from Kolo.  Really ought to have done better on Porto’s first chance when Toure’s loose marking left Cristian Rodriguez in the middle open for a diving header.

Gallas: 6.5 Nothing much to say about Gallas other than, again, like Toure, he looked as shaky as ever on set-pieces.  I don’t know what the manager has to do to get our two center-backs to defend properly but whatever it is I hope he figures it out quickly.

Clichy: 8 Great game from Clichy.  Linked up well down the left and got forward often.  He was there in defense when called upon and as always was Arsenal’s Mr. Consistent.

Walcott: 8.5 Theo caused trouble for Porto all night long and grabbed an assist on van Persie’s second goal.  Theo has shown that even when he doesn’t get on the scoresheet he contributes a lot to this team.  His close control and lightning quick pace are conmstantly an asset on the pitch.  While he always looked dangerous against Porto, on a few occasions his decision making seemed lacking.  I am sure this will however get better with time.

Fabregas: 9 Great game from Cesc.  The best so far this season.  He hustled in defense and utterly dominated the midfield.  I hope this is a sign of what is to come from our true leader as he still looks to get completely back on track after a long summer.

Denilson: 7 Going forward has never been Denilson’s issue.  Rather it has been his ability to fulfill the defensive part of his midfield roll.  I remain unconvinced.  He hardly shields the back and I cannot remember the last time I saw him put in a decent challenge.  The kid has skill surely and in the attacking half he is a great asset but when the opposition get the ball the young Brazilian seems to go missing.  Perhaps it is time for Alex Song to get a proper run out.

Nasri: 7.5 A solid return performance from Samir.  It was quite clear he had been out for a bit and a game like this with a solid 60 minutes will go a long ways towards improving his match fitness.  Other than that, he seemed to hook up well with Clichy and showed good skill on the ball.  His passing was a bit off but he did again show his willingness to shoot and get inside the box, something this Arsenal team could always do with more of.

van Persie: 9 Fantastic game after a woeful performance on Saturday.  The Dutchman still seems to be getting to full fitness and this game surely silenced some who said he should lose his place in the line up.  Some great bits of skill, terrific vision and clinical finishing capped off a great night in Europe for Robin.

Adebayor: 8.5 Good game from Ade who scored two and set up another quite nicely.  He generally caused problems for the Porto defense but his finishing could still use some work.  For a player who gets as many chances as he does it would be nice if he could have a higher rate of conversion since as all Arsenal fans know, not every night is like the one we just had.

SUBS:

Bendtner: 7.5 Did well to win the penalty and had some nice link up with the rest of the team.  He played a nice ball through to Adebayor as well for what should’ve been his hat-trick.

Eboue: 7 Really ought to have put his chance in.  Other than that, he used pace well and showed a few bits of skill every once in a while but someone should tell him to leave the step overs to others.

Vela: 7.5 Did well against Porto.  Kept the ball close and almost had a chance himself.  Showed good pace and generally looked threatening.  Games like this will prove crucial in the development of the young Mexican striker and as the season goes on I can only see Carlos pushing more and more for a permanent spot in the first team.

Man of the Match: Robin van Persie looks to have finally gotten back to his usual self.  His finishing touch was brilliant and he even nabbed an assist to go with his two goals on the evening.  Hopefully this game will mark his true return to fitness and help him get in confidence back.  A fit van Persie certainly gives Arsenal another dimension.  Let’s all hope Robin’s fitness is here to stay.

Arsenal vs Hull City Player Ratings

Hull City's Man of the Match: William "Captain Wack" Gallas

Arsenal’s “Jekyll and Hyde” season continued last night as they floundered against newly promoted Hull City.  Credit must be given to City for playing a fantastic match, but what must be more closely scrutinized is the complete lack of passion or desire that most of the squad played with last night.  Arsenal found themselves having one of those frustrating games in the first half, but came out in the second looking ready to play.  An own goal put the Gunners up but Hull came back with an amazing strike from Geovanni and then, in typical Arsenal fashion, the “captain” William Gallas conceded a goal off of a corner.  Time slowly dragged on and the game came to full time with Hull City beating Arsenal by a score of 1-2.

Almunia: 7 Solid game with solid distribution.  Cannot be faulted really for either of the goals.  No one was ever going to stop the first and the second off the corner was perfectly placed.

Sagna: 7 Good game getting forward and good recovering in defense.  The Frenchman was able to track back fairly well in defense.  Again he proved a vital part of our attacking game as he linked up well with Theo and put in some decent crosses.

Toure: 6 Kolo did not have a particularly outstanding game and, to be honest, I am having a hard time remembering anything he really did.  He never really seemed there on the pitch and perhaps that was his problem.  Where was he when Geovanni needed to be closed down?

Gallas: 4 Horrible, Horrible game from the “captain”.  What is so mind-blowing is that this is the second game Arsenal have lost due to  a Gallas mistake.  I cannot believe how little conviction Gallas seems to approach these games with.  He shows no passion and, frankly, he doesn’t seem to care about the club at all.  How he has retained not only his captaincy, but his place is the starting XI remains one of the club’s biggest mysteries.  It makes no sense at all really.  In any other profession, when one cannot do ones’ job, one is replaced.  Yet we forge on with Gallas at the helm.  It is the height of stupidity for Gallas to continue to hold his armband, let alone his place in the side.  t is about time that Wenger passed the captaincy on to our true leader, Fabregas, and give Djourou a shot in the starting XI.

Clichy: 7 Clichy again proved why he is so vital to our squad.  He was great in defense and getting forward.  If only the other members of the defense played with the same passion and fire that Gael does.

Walcott: 7 Decent enough game for Theo.  He was frustrating at times when he seemed to vanish but it was his run that led to the Arsenal goal.  I would like to see Theo be more imposing but I suppose that will come with games and age.

Fabregas: 8 Cesc seemed to be the only Arsenal player willing to rip a shot off.  Like usual he was great in possession and passing.  He found the open man and created space for himself quite well.  He was instrumental in the Arsenal goal and seemed to be the only one with any sort of urgency.

Denilson: 5.5 Not his best game.  He was okay going forward and decent in distribution but woeful in defense.  He should have closed down Geovanni and his failure to do so led to the equalizer.  His defensive shortcomings, especially in comparison with Flamini last year, are leaving a lot to be desired at this point.

Eboue: 6 Eboue caught a case of AHS (Alex Hleb Syndrome) the other night when he got into a good position in the box with no one between him and the keeper yet passed the ball away rather than shoot.  Eboue wasn’t bad but “not being bad” is hardly acceptable at Arsenal.  Needless to say, he really failed to make an impression on the game.

Adebayor: 5 Where the hell was Ade last night?  He seemed to disappear for much of the match only to show up in the second half to miss a chance to put us up 2-nil which could have sealed the points for us and then when right back to being Mr. Invisible.

van Persie: 6 Little went right for Robin.  He took some shots but never seemed to be able to find the target.  He was solid in his link-up play and good in finding some openings for the pass but was unable to take his chances and kill the game off, something one would want from a player like Robin in a game like this.  Hopefully he can find his shooting boots against Porto and Arsenal can get back on track.

SUBS:

Bendtner: 6.5 Decently effective coming off the bench but really had little time to make an impact on the game.  Both he and Vela inspired a more direct attack as soon as they came on.

Vela: 7 Carlos looked solid and creative.  He held off defenders and made some good runs but in the end he had too little time on the pitch and was unable to help inspire a draw.

Man of the Match: Fabregas gets the Arsenal Man of the Match for this game. Gallas gets it for Hull City.  Cesc seemed like the only one who cared about winning this match.  He pushed the troops forward, he looked for the passes and he was the one to pull the trigger on occasion.  It has to be only a matter of time before Arsenal’s true captain is given the armband.