It was yet another successful trip to Wembley, our second home.
Arsene went on and surprised us all again with three at the back against City in FA Cup semi-final. Although it didn’t start well, and most Arsenal players were underperforming in the first half, it all turned in second and ended well for us during extra time.
All of the players really stepped up in second half and proved they are more than fit to wear the shirt – something that was questioned not so long ago.
Petr Čech – 7
One more hot and cold match from Petr Čech. Lots of Arsenal fans, myself included, have the impression he should have done better for City’s only goal. But then again, it was Sergio Aguero, the man would score one-on-one 99% of the time, and it was their only goal much thanks to Petr as well – wonderful save on that Toure shot, and looked composed most of the time.
Gabriel – 8
What a match by our Brazilian centreback! He is so often criticised – mostly deserved, mind – but he was amazing against City. Well composed, no reckless tackles (minus the one on Silva in first half), and looked good on set pieces as well. Deserves all the praise he’ll get. He definitely enjoys this three at the back!
Laurent Koscielny – 8
I mean, what can I say about our captain that I haven’t already? The rock in our defense, constant threat during our set pieces, and a good captain as well. Great performance, shame he was just a tad offside for that goal – would be amazing!
Rob Holding – 8
Oh man, why doesn’t Rob start more often! Another great performance by the youngster, after a good one against Boro a week ago. This time Rob almost got us the winner but his headed effort went just above the goal. Composed at the back, more mature than his age would tell, although that one clearance bothered me – you know which one, when he kicked the ball out for corner kick rather than throw in or even far away from our goal. He’ll learn and I’m excited to watch him do it!
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 9
Man of the match performance by our little minx (lol) Ox. Constant threat on the wing, outrunning Clichy with no problem at all, and providing some good crosses – including that fantastic one for Nacho’s equalizer. Really amazing performance from Alex, deserved to be named MOTM by everyone who’s doing the whole MOTM thing.
Aaron Ramsey – 6.5
I’m one of Ramsey’s biggest fans and he wasn’t the strongest link in our midfield today but I still think he did well. Yes, he lost the ball that lead to Aguero’s opener but who doesn’t lose the ball now and then? He didn’t get much chance to do anything up front, especially in the first half. He should have done better.
Granit Xhaka – 7
Same as Ramsey, he did okay but nothing special. Worked his arse off in defensive tasks and most of the time did well (although I wish that he just kicked the ball far away a few times in the first half, rather than trying to dribble his way through). He looked better in second half and helped set up a chance or two as well. A good performance without reckless tackles.
Nacho Monreal – 8.5
What a match from Nacho! I have seen a few tweets when the lineup was announced, asking for Gibbs instead of him – boy, did he shut them up! So composed defensively, handled City’s attacks very well, and helped create a few chances for us too. He was outrun by Aguero for their opener but, let’s face it, it’s Aguero. And then boom – that goal, in right place at the right time! Brilliant. I was so happy for him.
Mesut Özil – 7
You will read mixed reports on Mesut’s performance today. Some with #agenda will tell you that he was once again missing and not helping at all but oh boy, he did. He was knackered when he was subbed off, and that does not come from “not showing up”. I have to be realistic, I wish he had shot late on in the added time and buried City’s hopes, and he didn’t get to assist today, but he did so much for the team in the build up and even defensively. Okay match.
Alexis Sanchez – 8
During the first half when City dominated and we sat back, Alexis was the one forcing our defense to get out of Cech’s lap and attack, but he was more talk than work himself too. At one point in second half I honestly forgot Sanchez was still on the pitch! But, as it always is, Alexis needs one chance to make it up – and he did. He scored the winner and I can’t thank him enough.
Olivier Giroud – 6
Okay Giroud, I’m sorry, but I have to go with a rating lower than 7 even though I said I won’t. Sure, Giroud was left alone up front for the most of the time but he didn’t use the balls he did get. He had one shot and that’s it. City’s defence took good care of him but I expected more.
Danny Welbeck – 7
Oh what a difference does Welbeck make! City looked knackered when he came on and he used it – had some really good chances and should have scored – or at least passed to two open players in *that* chance.
Hector Bellerin – 3
CUT YOUR HAIR HECTOR
Francis Coquelin – 5
Had only two minutes of play, and didn’t f**k up anything so here’s a 5.