Arsenal kept a clean sheet but failed to make their chances count in a disappointing overall display against Burnley, despite a fast start.
Arsenal had early chances through Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, but the two strikers wasted them. In these kinds of games, that tends to come back to haunt you.
The team lost their fluidity before long and an injury to Bukayo Saka left Granit Xhaka playing left-back. Burnley actually had the better chances towards the end of the match, with goalline technology required to confirm a late effort didn’t go in.
Here are our Arsenal player ratings for the Burnley match.
- Bernd Leno 6 – Hardly had a save to make, as the goalmouth action wasn’t regular. Burnley missed their best chances on their own. Didn’t make any huge mistakes with when to come for the home side’s many crosses. Distribution was fine.
- Hector Bellerín 7 – Another strong performance since the return from injury, bar one late shot where he was clearly having flashbacks to Stamford Bridge. Won all of his attempted tackles and made a few key clearances.
- Shkodran Mustafi 8 – Excellent display from the much-criticised centre-back. Won seven of his 10 aerial duels against a physical Burnley side, played some nice forward passes and led the match in clearances.
- David Luiz 6 – Not nearly as confident in the air as Mustafi on the day, only winning 43% of his aerials. Mostly solid defensively other than that. He played some fantastic forward passes though, and he should’ve had an assist for Aubameyang.
- Bukayo Saka 6 – It was a testament to how well Saka was playing before his injury that everything got worse after it. He offered the team width, won a good free-kick and put in a few great crosses, but no one got on the end of them. Then the injury killed his performance and he ended up coming off at half-time.
- Matteo Guendouzi 5 – The ball goes past him too easily when Arsenal are pressing, and when he was on the ball himself he kept playing it behind his teammates. It makes it really difficult to counter when you have to check and run back to the ball every time. Not all bad, but not good enough either.
- Granit Xhaka 7 – Another good showing overall. Started really well, adapted to having to slot into a left-back role. Wasn’t nearly as effective going forward as Saka had been, but that’s no surprise. Wasn’t lacking in any other meaningful sense.
- Mesut Özil 5 – At times, he linked up moves well, but he faded away pretty quickly. The tired arguments about his application in away games are actually looking fairly accurate at the moment.
- Gabriel Martinelli 6 – Racked up the tackles, as usual, leading the team again. Clearly much better on the left, and he improved when he moved over there. His dribbles didn’t come off very often on this occasion.
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang 5 – His movement was as good as ever. He fashioned three excellent chances with clever runs, but he wasted all three. Can’t help but feel he would’ve done more than Lacazette to get on the end of Saka’s early curling crosses as well.
- Alexandre Lacazette 4 – Missed a second-minute header pretty badly, took a little too long with a shot in the 82nd minute. For the 80 minutes between those two chances, really didn’t offer enough. He’s out of form and needs to step back for a game or two.
- Lucas Torreira 6.5 – Solid, particularly his layoff to Lacazette late on. Definitely the right decision not to go for goal, even if the striker failed to score. Still looks less effective when he doesn’t have Xhaka for a midfielder partner.
- Joe Willock 6 – Not bad, bar one counter-attack where he advanced much too slowly and ended up having to turn back when Burnley caught up. Involved in a few decent moves, created a good chance, had a terrible shot.
- Eddie Nketiah N/A – Coming on late, only had one touch, a completed pass.