Arsenal Player ratings from their 4-1 win against Fulham | Premier League 2018-19
After the humiliating defeat against Liverpool, the Gunners needed a win against Fulham to stay alive in the top-four race. On the other hand, Fulham are struggling at 19th in the table and desperately need points to get out of the relegation zone. It was a game crucial to both the sides for contrasting reasons.
The first big chance of the first half fell to Fulham, but Sessegnon's shot went wide off the post. He was again at the end of a delightful cross by Schurrele but completely missed his kick. Fulham was made to pay as Iwobi found Xhaka who calmly slotted home from close range to give the home side the lead.
As the game progressed, Arsenal started to show their dominance with Aubameyang and Xhaka coming close to increasing their lead. Though the Gunners were not at their scintillating best, they still went into the break with a slender half-time lead.
Arsenal got some breathing space at the start of the second half as Lacazette pounced on to a Kolasinac pass to make it 2-0. Against the run of play, Kamara got a goal back for Fulham, but two more goals from Ramsey and Aubameyang sealed the game for the Gunners.
Here are the Arsenal player ratings from the match.
Bernd Leno - 6.5/10
The German goalkeeper looked a bit shaky at the start of the game with some wayward distribution down the line. He got called into action a couple of times in the beginning, but as the home side settled down, Leno barely had a save to make in the first 45 minutes.
Laurent Koscielny - 6/10
It's always hard to come off such a gruesome injury and perform at the highest level. Laurent had to deal with Sessegnon down the right, and it became a nightmare for the Frenchman. Few times in the first half, Koscielny lost his man with the youngster getting two glorious opportunities to put the visitors ahead but failed to convert either of them.
Mustafi - 5.5/10
Arsenal's defense is very shaky and today was no different. Mustafi played on the right of a three-person defense and got caught out of possession a few times in the first half. He was rightfully substituted at halftime by Lucas Torreira.
Sokratis - 6/10
Sokratis had one of the worst performances against Liverpool last time out and seemed to carry that uncertainty today in the first half as well. He didn't look confident on the ball and played few casual passes putting his side into unnecessary pressure. However, in the second half as Arsenal reverted to a back four, the Greece International got his confidence back and looked much more assured on and off the ball.
Maitland-Niles - 6.5/10
Niles tirelessly ran up and down the right flank and linked up well with the forwards. He was sound defensively as well thwarting much of Fulham's attack from the left-hand side.
Sead Kolasinac - 7.5/10
Kolasinac has been one of the few better players at Arsenal this season and today was no exception. Apart from one mistake in the first half where he left his man Sessegnon for an easy chance on goal, the Bosnian was solid moving forward and even tracked back when deemed necessary. His movement allowed Iwobi to cut inside and put the Fulham defense in all sort of pressure. Kolasinac provided the assist for Lacazette to score Arsenal's second of the day and played a crucial hand in the third goal as well.
Granit Xhaka - 7.5/10
The Swiss International played a bit further up the pitch in the first half which gave Granit the freedom in Fulham's six-yard box at will. He opened the scoring for Arsenal today after calmly slotting home Iwobi's cross from a close range. Xhaka shifted in the defensive midfield position in the second half which gave him a hard time against the likes of Sessegnon and Mitrovic.
Matteo Guendouzi - 7/10
The Youngster played with heart and always intended to move forward with the ball. Guendouzi was a bundle of energy in a game where most of the players looked tired out of fatigue.
Alex Iwobi - 7/10
The biggest threat for Arsenal down the left flank, Iwobi's delightful cross broke the Fulham defense in the first half. The Nigerian also played one clever back flick to Kolasinac which found Xhaka, but Rico saved his shot on goal.
Lacazette - 8/10
Lacazette work rate and desire were next to none. He often dropped deep to receive the ball and make things happen from the back. The Frenchman deservedly got his goal to double Arsenal's lead in the second half.
Aubameyang - 7.5/10
The Gabonese became the leading goal scorer this season after firing Arsenal's fourth goal of the day. He was impressive in patches and even played a silky pass to Kolasinac who found Lacazette to score the Gunners second of the day.
Torreira - 6/10
Torreira came on in the second half in place of Mustafa to provide some stability in the midfield. The Uruguayan's distribution was proper and protected the back four against any counter-attack from Claudio Ranieri's side.
Aaron Ramsey - 6/10
The time Ramsey got today was enough to get a goal and give Arsenal a two-goal cushion. The Wales International came on to calm things down at a time when Fulham was on top, and he did precisely that, scored a goal and sealed all three points for the home side.
Saka got the chance to make his Premier League debut, but it was too late to make an impact.