Arsenal dropped points for the first time in 12 games against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park, in a very frustrating afternoon for Unai Emery’s side.
Arsenal came from behind to lead for much of the second half against Palace, but let that lead slip in disappointing fashion late on.
The hosts benefitted from two dodgy penalty decisions, with the first coming directly after a foul on Rob Holding and the second the result of a dive from Wilfried Zaha. However, the Gunners needed a better overall performance to put the game beyond their opponents and to avoid relying on those small margins.
Let’s have a look at our individual player ratings for the match.
1Goalkeeper and Defence
Bernd Leno 7
Having won the number one spot, there wasn’t much Leno could do to prove he deserves it on this occasion. He only had to make one save which wasn’t from the penalty spot and, unfortunately, he couldn’t stop two good spot kicks from Luka Milivojevic.
The German’s passing was as accurate as ever, with just one ball failing to find its target all game.
Hector Bellerin 6
Bellerin had a relatively average half, before being substituted during the break due to an injury. He made a couple of good blocks, but he should’ve finished an excellent chance when he found space in the box. His first touch wasn’t good enough and taking a second invited the defenders to challenge.
Shkodran Mustafi 5
Mustafi conceded a first-half penalty, failed to make the tactical foul in the build-up to the second penalty and didn’t close Meyer down quickly enough for one other dangerous attempt. Winning a lot of aerial duels (as usual) doesn’t excuse any of that.
Rob Holding 6.5
Holding’s passing was significantly better than his defensive teammates, and he didn’t make any major errors. Still, he has to take a share of the blame for Palace having so many good chances.
Granit Xhaka 6.5
It was all going so well for Xhaka until the end. He’d scored a fantastic free-kick, and held Zaha, Townsend and Kouyate at bay for most of the match, then he stuck a leg out when he didn’t need to and let Zaha swan dive over it.
This isn’t the Swiss international’s position, and he shouldn’t have been left isolated one-vs-one against one of the league’s top dribblers with minutes to go, so I’m not giving him all of the blame here.