How Sunderland player's rated in their 4-1 defeat to Arsenal

How Sunderland player's rated in their 4-1 defeat to Arsenal

Sunderland lost once again as a poor defensive display allowed Arsenal to score three goals in seven minutes.

They had managed to get back into the game thanks to a Jermain Defoe penalty, but it never looked likely that they could go on and win the match.

There is little confidence in the squad at the moment and David Moyes doesn’t have the answers to turn it around.

The Scottish manager could find himself out of a job soon as something has to change at Sunderland and he is the most likely to bite the bullet.

Here are how their players rated on Saturday…


Jordan Pickford – The young goalkeeper has done well since coming into the first team and he has the potential to become an excellent Premier League player. However, he is still raw and that was evident on Saturday. He can’t be blamed for any of the goals, but at the moment it seems inevitable that he will concede every week. The England U21 international has yet to keep a clean sheet in the Premier League and it is difficult to see that record ending soon. 5

Brad Jones – The Sunderland defence was a mess today, especially in the second half and the right back didn’t have a great game. He was okay, but he doesn’t have the talent to play in the Premier League and that was evident on Saturday. Arsenal found a lot of joy down his side through Kieran Gibbs and that will concern Moyes. 4

Lamine Kone – After an excellent tackle to prevent Francis Coquelin, the defender’s performance went downhill quickly. He should have done more to stop Alexis Sanchez from opening the scoring and it is clear that he isn’t committed to Sunderland after a summer of speculation. The centre back was good at the end of last season, but he now looks a completely different player. 3

John O’Shea – He was solid before departing with an injury and his experience was missed in the second half. The former Manchester United player does help organise the back four and his fellow defenders looked lost without him. That said, Sunderland shouldn’t be reliant on the ageing defender and it shows how poor the recruitment has been. 5


Patrick van Aanholt – The left back was okay in possession, but his defensive ability should be questioned. He struggled all afternoon against Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and it is another position that needed to be strengthened during the summer. 4

Wahbi Khazri – The winger looks a shadow of the player that he was during the second half of last season. His final ball was poor, but he did try to make things happen. Khazri isn’t good enough to be relied on as the main creative outlet in a Premier League side, once again underlining the lack of quality in the Sunderland squad. 4

Didier Ndong – He was one of the better performers for the home side as he worked hard and put the pressure on the Arsenal midfielders. The summer signing was good in possession and rarely lost the ball, finishing the match with an 89% pass success rate. 6

Jack Rodwell – He has yet to live up to his potential and he offered little once more against Arsenal. It isn’t surprising that he hasn’t won a league match that he has started in over three years as he can’t influence Premier League games. 4

Steven Pienaar – The South African has been on the decline for a few years and it was a surprise when Sunderland opted to bring him to the North East during the summer. He was enthusiastic and comfortable in possession, but he couldn’t influence the game. 5


Duncan Watmore – The winger did excellently to earn his side a penalty and his work rate can’t be questioned. However, he is another player that lacks the technical ability to make things happen in the final third. He is going to forge a decent career in professional football, but he isn’t ready to be a Premier League starter. 6

Jermain Defoe – The striker is the only player in the side that has the quality required to perform well in the Premier League on a consistent basis. He is Sunderland’s only hope of surviving this season, but he needs to be helped. Defoe didn’t make a mistake from the spot and can’t be faulted for the situation that Sunderland find themselves in. 6

Papy Djilobodji – Sunderland invested a lot of money in the centre back this summer and he has yet to show that he can live up to the price tag. He looked lost after coming on and was majorly to blame for second half collapse. 3

Adnan Januzaj – He tried to make things happen and has the potential to be a good player for Sunderland this season. However, he wasn’t given much time to make things happen and after coming on, his side were under the cosh. 5

Lynden Gooch – The American wasn’t given much time to impress and as such can’t be rated. N/A

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