Expectations were low going into Wenger’s last showdown at Old Trafford, but a stoppage-time header from Fellaini overshadowed a solid Arsenal performance. With 8 changes to the team that drew 1-1 on Thursday (including a debut for Mavropanos), it’s understandable that fans considered the Gunners underdogs in yet another away match. Let’s see how the boys did…
David Ospina – 5
Ospina was only really challenged 2 times during the whole game, and that’s both of the times that Manchester United scored. He couldn’t do too much about Pogba’s goal, but we all saw the header coming, so a better keeper could’ve gotten to it. He needs to take charge of his area better.
Hector Bellerin – 7
It feels weird to say that a 23-year old was our most experienced starting defender, but that’s what Hector Bellerin was. He did well defensively but could’ve used some of the good crosses he displayed on Thursday.
Calum Chambers – 7
9 clearances, 3 interceptions, 3 tackles, and 3 aerial duels won for Chambers. Had his passing been higher than 75%, we’d be looking at a “great” game, so I’m just sticking with “fairly solid” on this one though.
Konstantinos Mavropanos – 7
I’ve been following the young Greek defender since his transfer in January, and he greatly impressed me playing for the U23’s. He didn’t shatter the world or anything, but he put in a great first performance against a difficult team in a hostile environment. 3 interceptions, 4 clearances, and 92% passing is a very respectable haul.
Sead Kolasinac – 5.5
His defensive positioning confused me throughout the game. He played incredibly narrow at times, forcing Iwobi and Nelson to cover his wing (if they could react in time). Regardless, he did alright (5 tackles), but his passing wasn’t great. He went off with yet another injury.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles – 7.5
While he hasn’t always been convincing in midfield, he may have just had a MOTM performance today. I’ve said this about him before, but it’s worth repeating: AMN is incredibly composed on the ball, which is a great thing to see at such a young age. He wasn’t afraid to go two-to-two with the likes of Pogba and Matic, completing 2 tackles, 2 dribbles, and 92% of his 39 passes.
Granit Xhaka – 6.5
Besides a nonsensical attempt at a tackle before Pogba’s goal, Xhaka did fairly well. He continued to cover for the defence for the length of the game and did well to set up Mkhi’s goal.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan – 7.5
Despite an inexperienced lineup, I knew that if the team could get the ball up to Auba and Mkhi, we’d have a solid chance of scoring goals. Mkhi narrowly missed a chance early on, and then he finally hit the back of the net with a great, low shot in the 50th minute. He pushed the envelope throughout, always looking to attack, and I love that about him.
Alex Iwobi – 6.5
He looked a lot more assured today in his performance. Playing centrally, he did well to help the ball move quickly in the final third, but he got tired at a critical point in the game, where we were trying to find a winner.
Reiss Nelson – 6
The youngest Gunner of the day tried his hardest to be creative, but he couldn’t quite crack the code. He was incredibly careful with the ball, completing 20 out of 21 passes. However, he still has some work to do physically as he was overpowered by the more experienced United players on a few occasions.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – 6
Having only received a total of 32 touches in 90 minutes, he was fairly anonymous on the day. His runs when unnoticed (as usual), and he only had one decent chance at goal which ended up being a soft header right to De Gea.
Danny Welbeck – 6.5
Danny might have hoped to get one last crack at scoring against his old club when he came on with 30 minutes left, but United had taken a firm grip on the game by that point. However, he wasn’t deterred and put in a solid defensive performance making 5/5 tackles and 2 clearances.
Nacho Monreal – 6
His introduction put a little more stability in the defence towards the end so it’s a shame that they had to give up a goal in that fashion.
Joe Willock – N/A
Wasn’t involved enough to rate.