Arsenal 3-0 West Ham United - Player ratings
The devastating loss to Monaco about a fortnight ago now seems a distant memory for the Gunner faithful as a late flurry of goals saw Arsenal cruise to a 3-0 victory over West Ham at the Emirates today. The win keeps the Gunners further cement their spot in the top four (within a point of Manchester City after the final whistle) and see them firmly in contention for a Champions League berth for the eighteenth season running.
While, many might believe that the final scoreline flattered to deceive, there won’t be many who would argue if I say Arsenal were “brilliantly simple and simply brilliant” in the last few minutes.
Meanwhile, the Hammers brilliant start to the season seem to have fizzled out in the last few weeks as injuries have led to Sam Allardyce’s side go winless in their last seven games.
Here are the player ratings from tonight’s London derby.
David Ospina (7/10): Didn’t have much to do for the majority of the game. Whatever was fired at goal by West Ham, was fired straight at him, making his life comfortable in between the sticks.
Calum Chambers (6.5/10): Looked comfortable more with the ball rather than without. Put in a few cracking crosses in the first half but allowed Matt Jarvis to go behind him time and again. Lucky not to have been punished for his indiscipline.
Per Mertesacker (7.5/10): Could have got in trouble if not for Laurent Koscielny. His lack of pace has always been a hindrance, but he certainly makes up for it with his positional sense. West Ham just didn’t commit enough forward to bother him too much.
Laurent Koscielny (8/10): The bedrock of Arsenal’s defence. He sets the tone for the Gunners at the back and led by example yet again.
Nacho Monreal (7.5/10): Seems to have put his horrors against Crystal Palace behind him. Stewart Downing never gets any joy from him. Vital interception around the 70th-minute mark to keep West Ham from getting it back level.
Francis Coquelin (8/10): Another solid game from the youngster. Many Arsenal fans are enjoying the sight of another physical and robust young French midfielder commanding the park. Remember the last one?
Aaron Ramsey (8/10): Playing in a much deeper role than last year but still has the knack of popping up in the box at the most opportune moments. Could and probably should have got more than the one goal he scored.
Theo Walcott (7/10): Indecisive in the final third. Needs more time on the pitch to get back to his best. Unlucky not to have got a penalty in the fledgling moments of the game.
Mesut Ozil (6.5/10): Neat play on the left-hand side, but still not even a shadow of the German international that lit up the world stage at the Bernabeu and in his early Arsenal days.
Alexis Sanchez (6.5/10): Tested Adrian with a fine shot in the first half, but you would surely expect more from the Chilean.
Olivier Giroud (9/10): The goal at the stroke of half time really calmed the nerves after a half of some wishy-washy football from the Gunners. Brilliantly set up Ramsey to slot in the second.
Santi Cazorla (8/10): The Spaniard has just been brilliant this season ever since his move back to the centre of the pitch. His brilliant play and movement set up Arsenal's third.
Danny Welbeck (6.5/10): Asked to play on the left today. Used his speed to get into the final third, but nothing to show for it.
Mathieu Flamini (7/10): Was “Johnny on the spot” to tap in Arsenal’s third, his first since March of last year.
West Ham United
Adrian (7/10): Kept West Ham in the game with a flurry of brilliant saves in the opening half. Never had any chance with any of the goals.
Joey O'Brien (6.5/10): Didn’t find much trouble as failed to build anything from the left in the first-half. Was left a spectator as the Gunners carved him open by brilliant movement and passing for the third. Mesut Ozil’s lack of confidence let him off the hook as well.
Phil Collins (7/10): Had a lot in his hands playing with a part-time centre back. Was the mast man between Arsenal and a sure goal a number of times.
Cheikhou Kouyate (6/10): Forced to play at centre-back today because of West Ham’s injury crisis. Had the heart but not always the positional sense.
Aaron Cresswell (6/10): The busier of the wing-back in the first half as the pace of Theo Walcott had him in trouble. Walcott’s misses and Collins’ heroics helps him not getting screwed by the analysts.
Alex Song (6.5/10): Was West Ham’s warrior in the middle of the park, breaking up play. However, was dispossessed time and again. His 57% pass completion rate also leaves a lot to be desired.
Mark Noble (5.5/10): Kept it simple, but sometimes left a devastatingly bland aftertaste with his passing. Never had the options today to spray the ball around with only Diafra Sakho willing to commit himself going forward.
Kevin Nolan (5/10): A shot at David Ospina’s goal near the half an hour mark was the only thing worth remembering from Kevin Nolan’s play tonight.
Matt Jarvis (6.5/10): Got behind Chambers on a few occasions but failed to deliver the goods. Had to track back time and again to help Cresswell deal with Walcott pace.
Stewart Downing (6/10): Alike Jarvis at the other end, Downing came back deep time and again to help Joey O’Brien deal with Alexis Sanchez. Has looked much better this season, when played through the middle.
Diafra Sakho (6/10): Too isolated up front. Even when he got opportunities on the break, had no one to help him out.
Morgan Amalfitano (5/10): Came on for Matt Jarvis, but only a foul was what he contributed to the game.
Nene (NA): Too little time to do anything.