Player ratings vs Huddersfield Town: Injury-ravaged Arsenal scrape uninspiring win
Arsenal took an early lead thanks to a deflected Alex Iwobi strike, and Alexandre Lacazette doubled their advantage before half-time with a goal from close range. After that, the team had a few good opportunities to extend the lead, and their wastefulness was almost punished as a Sead Kolasinac own goal cut the deficit in injury time.
Fortunately, it was too late for Huddersfield to grab an equaliser, and Arsenal took home the three points.
Let’s have a look at our individual player ratings for the match.
1Goalkeeper and Centre-Backs
Bernd Leno 7
Leno generally had a good game, making one excellent save at the start of the second half and a few more throughout the match. However, he came out bizarrely for one free-kick he was never going to get to, and he was lucky Laurent Koscielny was around to mop up another rebound.
If we’re being kind, the wind might have made those incidents more difficult to judge. Still, it was a shame to see the German lose his clean sheet at the end.
Shkodran Mustafi 5
As usual, Mustafi racked up the interceptions and aerial duels in the statistics, but that didn’t make up for the way he kept giving the ball away in dangerous areas all game. A better team would certainly have punished the German’s mistakes.
Laurent Koscielny 8.5
Koscielny was by far Arsenal’s most impressive defender, and it was a bit of a throwback to the way he used to lead the back line at his peak. He made a couple of great last-ditch challenges, a huge 10 clearances and his passing was the complete opposite of Mustafi’s.
Without Rob Holding and Sokratis Papastathopoulos, for now, Unai Emery needs his captain to stay fit.
Nacho Monreal 6.5
Monreal’s best moment was a clearance off the line late in the game, but he had a relatively quiet match other than that, with most of Huddersfield’s best attacks coming from the other side.
There were one or two moments the Spaniard was caught a bit out of position, and he’s still more of a left-back than a centre-back. When he was back, though, he was solid.
Arsenal: Alex Iwobi does, and Alex Iwobi doesn’t
Arsenal’s win over Huddersfield allowed Alex Iwobi to do all the things we love and combine it with all the things he doesn’t do, that we’d wish he did.
Arsenal faced a tough and determined Huddersfield at their home, and their fans were rowdy, to say the least. For a full 90 minutes, the Terriers kept the fight up, determined to establish some hope fo staying in the Premier League.
And the Gunners had their own fighters. Namely, Alex Iwobi, the long-debated young man who has made a career of doing and not doing, hitting and missing, unable to establish any consistency.
For 45 minutes, the entirety of the first half, Alex Iwobi was a game changer. Both he and Henrikh Mkhitaryan were the drive behind this match, but it was Iwobi’s finish for the first goal that gave the Gunners that important first step.