How the Arsenal players rated in their home victory over Bournemouth

It was a great three points for Arsenal as they beat a resilient Bournemouth side, who didn’t come and sit back against the superior opposition. There are still problems for Arsenal, especially in central midfield as Arsene Wenger has yet to find his best pairing, but it was crucial that they got the three points after Saturday’s results. Alexis Sanchez was once again the star performer for the home side and finished the match with two goals. Here are how the players rated on Sunday:

Petr Cech – The Arsenal goalkeeper was solid and did everything that was asked of him without problem. He dived the wrong way for the penalty, but no fault can be placed at his door for that. When required, he came off of his line to claim the ball, relieving pressure on his back four. He made a great stop to deny Benik Afobe in the second half. 7

Mathieu Debuchy – It was a shock to see the Frenchman’s name on the team-sheet after being a man on the outside at Arsenal for the last year. However, injuries at full back provided him with an opportunity. Unfortunately for him, he suffered an injury just 15 minutes into the game and was withdrawn. N/A

Shkodran Mustafi – The summer signing has adjusted seamlessly to English football and was impressive once again on Sunday. He dealt with Bournemouth’s pace and dynamism well, but it was his ability to bring the ball out of the back four that was most impressive. The centre back is able to launch attacks from deep and he showed that on a few occasions against Bournemouth. 7

Laurent Koscielny – Arsenal are lucky to have a defender with the tenacity of Koscielny. He is an aggressive defender and came out of the back four to break up play on a few occasions. There is always the risk of a mistake with the Frenchman, but one didn’t come against Bournemouth and he deserves credit for his performance. 6

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Nacho Monreal – The Spaniard had a mixed game. He struggled with the pace of the Bournemouth attack and gave away the first half penalty after being beaten to the ball by the power of Callum Wilson. However, he more than made up for it with his delicious cross for Theo Walcott to head in and renew Arsenal’s lead. 6

Mohamed Elneny – There is a problem in the Arsenal midfield at the moment as Arsene Wenger has yet to find his best pairing in the centre of the park. The Egyptian is an assured passer and a hard worker, but he doesn’t have the technical ability to control matches. It is obvious that Arsenal are missing Santi Cazorla and Elneny isn’t an adequate replacement. 6

Granit Xhaka – Since joining the club in the summer, Granit Xhaka has been limited by the role that he has been asked to play. Arsenal have midfield problems at the moment, especially in transition and Xhaka has struggled to have the impact that many imagined he would. He showed flashes of his ability against Bournemouth, but he couldn’t dominate the midfield due to the systematic problems that are currently hindering Arsenal. 6

Theo Walcott – The England international could be set for one of his best seasons in an Arsenal shirt if he manages to avoid injuries. He was lively today and made several dangerous runs that tested the Bournemouth defence. In the second half, he renewed Arsenal’s lead with a nice header after good movement earned him space in the Bournemouth penalty area. 7

Mesut Ozil – It is clear that the German is trying hard to reach his best, but he has struggled to get to that level, especially in terms of creativity. His passing and set piece delivery was impressive once again. However, he isn’t influencing the game as much in open-play as he would like. 5

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – The winger deserved the opportunity to start after some impressive cameos in recent weeks, but he didn’t have as much impact on the match as he would have planned. Although his directness caused Bournemouth problems, he didn’t have the final product to make the most of his opportunity. He will have to show more to be a regular starter for Arsenal. 5

Alexis Sanchez – As expected, Sanchez was in excellent form and caused all sorts of problems with his movement. His link up play with the midfielders was scintillating at times and he showed exactly why he is being preferred to Olivier Giroud at the moment. The Chilean’s awareness and reading of the game allowed him to steal the ball after a Bournemouth mistake, before slotting past Adam Federici to open the scoring. His second goal clinched the three points for his side and once again displayed his intelligent movement. 8

Gabriel – The Brazilian did very well after coming on and looked assured in the defensive work that he had to do. A rush of blood late on meant that he went into the book, which was the only black mark on a good display. 7

Aaron Ramsey – After coming on, Ramsey got much more involved in attack than he usually does in a wide role. It was a good cameo and will keep him in Arsene Wenger’s mind for the coming weeks. 6

Olivier Giroud – He caused a lot of problems after coming on and ensured that Bournemouth remained on the back foot. The Frenchman was superb in the build-up to Alexis Sanchez’s second goal that put the game beyond doubt. 7

Featured image: All rights reserved by Stuart MacFarlane

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