Arsenal Season 2009-10: Player Ratings

After yet another season without silverware for Arsenal, it’s time to look back and reflect on the performances of the Gunners. Which players have given their all on the pitch, which ones still have the potential to make a mark in coming years, and which players are not worthy of donning the red and white shirt? Let’s have a look at each of them.

Lukasz Fabianski

For the Pole, the season was a catastrophe. Whenever he got his ‘chance to prove himself ’, he failed miserably. His positional sense and the ability to neatly ‘pluck a ball from the air’ are still below par.
Season Grade: 2/10
Next Season Verdict: Arsenal fans want him out, but there is a strange possibility of him staying back, as Arsene Wenger still believes he is an exceptional talent, like Francis Jeffers was!

Manuel Almunia

He suffered throughout the season, making costly blunders every now and then. If you look at the guy, he projects a man who is low on confidence and high on some disturbing green substance. Apart from those outstanding 15 minutes against Barcelona in the Champions League Quarter Final Home game, he has been quite dismal all through the campaign.
Season Grade: 3.5/10

Manuel Almunia Arsenal 2008/09

Next Season Verdict: He is definitely out of the club.

Armand Traore

The guy can be easily bullied by nippy right wingers and outmuscled by strong forwards. Armand doesn’t help the team even in the attacking front. He is just a decent third-choice left back who can fill in if required.
Season Grade: 3.5/10
Next Season Verdict: Considering Gibbs’ injury record, Arsene might be tempt to keep Armand in the squad as a backup for Clichy/Gibbs and even the left wing position.

Carlos Vela

Vela spent most of his season travelling between his homeland Mexico and North London. Considering how exceptionally talented he looked in that 6-0 win over Sheffield United in the Carling Cup two years back, we thought the guy will show another mesmerizing performance this season at some point of time. Sadly, along with a lost passport, he has lost his classy touch too.
Season Grade: 3.5/10
Next Season Verdict: With so many strikers in the team now, there is a fair chance of him leaving The Emirates.


Dudu, as many believe, never recovered mentally and to some extent, physically from that dark day in Birmingham. He is no more fearsome and lethal in front of the goal like he used to be. He is just a shadow of the player he was once, and his statistics of 3 goals in 24 league appearances in this season doesn’t help his cause too.
Season Grade: 4/10
Next Season Verdict: In a similar position as Vela, with Chamakh and Nicklas fighting for the second striker slot in the team, he is pushed to the third striking slot or out of the club.

Kieran Gibbs

Made very few appearances this season, but looked quite solid. He still needs to mature a lot, and being Gael Clichy’s understudy will help him.
Season Grade: 4/10
Next Season Verdict: Thanks to him being an Englishman, Arsene won’t let him go. He’ll be a very decent cover for Gael next season.

Craig Eastmond

Craig is still raw and young, but he made the most of it whenever he got a chance in the first team. He is a respectable backup for Song, but needs lot of match time to cool off the nerves.
Season Grade: 5/10
Next Season Verdict: He’ll stay, or probably go out on loan and play an entire season in a Championship side or a mid-table Premiership side.

Vito Mannone

His heroics at Craven Cottage was quickly forgotten when he made some costly blunders in the matches later.
Season Grade: 5/10
Next Season Verdict: With Wojciech Szczesny giving a power-packed season out on loan, Vito will have to fight for the second spot among the goal-keepers at the club

Mikael Silvestre

Whenever called upon, Mikael provided a decent performance at Center Back/Left Back. But he lacks pace and consistency, and is still hated by Arsenal fans for his obvious Manchester United connections. The unforgettable moment of the season would be his incredible one-two with Lionel Messi, where the latter scored a scorcher immediately after exchanging the pass with the French veteran.
Season Grade: 5.5/10
Next Season Verdict: His contract has expired and he is sure to leave the club.


The Brazilian had a mixed season; though he scored some long-distant screamers, he lacked consistency throughout the season. He has also fallen behind in the pecking order in the Arsenal midfield.
Season Grade: 5.5/10
Next Season Verdict: His chances of staying back are 50-50.

Tomas Rosicky

It’s such a frustration for Arsenal fans to see a player like Tomas Rosicky playing the way he is. The Czech captain used to be such a charismatic character with such extraordinary skills with the football before his injury. Like Dudu, he is a shadow of the player he used to be.
Season Grade: 5.5/10
Next Season Verdict: There is a possibility he might stay as Arsene might give him one last chance to repay back the faith shown by the manager.

Abou Diaby

Diaby was bought in as a replacement for Vieira in 2006. The closest he came to his ‘master’ was in the middle of this season, when he pulled off a string of power-packed performances along with the winner he scored against Liverpool from an excellent Rosicky cross. Apart from that, he has been ‘on-and-off’ throughout the season showing lack of maturity and ‘intent’. Season Grade: 6/10
Next Season Verdict: He’ll stay and along with Song will provide the defensive cover to the Arsenal Back Four.

Gael Clichy

We don’t think anybody has made more costly mistakes this season than Gael. His end-season rediscovery of form is what will give the Arsenal fans some relief. We’ll hope he gets back to his best days (ala 2007-08 season) at the club.
Season Grade: 6/10
Next Season Verdict: He will stay.

Theo Walcott

The only thing for show was his incredible pace with which he ‘tried’ outdoing his adversaries. Theo is a guy with massive potential but lacks the ‘purpose’ when it comes to feeding the final ball or scoring from a one-on-one with the keeper.
Season Grade: 6/10
Next Season Verdict: He is sure to stay. He really needs to come back fresh from the World Cup and pull off a sterling performance next season; the Gunners are waiting for ‘Theo to shine’.

Andrey Arshavin

He showed flashes of brilliance sometimes but mostly faded out in important matches of the season. He did have a spectacular season off-the-field amusing his fans with his repartee. Now, he really needs to focus on the field and show why he is Russia’s most exceptional talent.
Season Grade: 6.5/10

Football - Hull City v Arsenal Barclays Premier League

Next Season Verdict: He needs to get his focus back and stop talking about things related to ‘Barcelona’.

Bacary Sagna

Bacary will never be an outstanding performer but his consistency is his forte. He has defended really well for most of the season, and has also contributed with some dazzling low crosses which added to Arsenal’s goal tally.
Season Grade: 7/10
Next Season Verdict: He will surely stay.

Emmanuel Eboue

What a turnaround it has been for this man from Ivory Coast! Exactly a year after he was booed by his own fans against Wigan, Eboue changed himself into a more consistent and full-grown performer on the pitch. He has also maintained an excellent relationship with every member in the team.
Season Grade: 7/10
Next Season Verdict: There are clubs in Europe who would want his services, but Arsene won’t let his prized possession go who is also a crafty midfielder along with being Bacary’s able backup.

Nicklas Bendtner

St. Niko was monumental in most of the mid-season clashes after his return from his injury. The lank Dane provides the only aerial threat in the Arsenal team. His first-touch needs a lot of improvement and he is working hard to get that done.
Season Grade: 7/10
Next Season Verdict: He is quite aware of the fact that he has to fight for his ‘Support Strikers’ place in the side with Chamakh and he will be ready for it.

Aaron Ramsey

If not for this guy, ‘Rambo’ could have filled Cesc’s boots this season when the latter was injured. He developed really well and was almost ‘up’ for the big job in the starting line-up when the tragedy happened.
Season Grade: 7.5/10
Next Season Verdict: We’ll all hope Aaron recovers well and comes back stronger and better, not like Dudu and Rosicky.

Samir Nasri

THAT fantastic goal against Porto where he dribbled past a horde of defenders before smashing the ball past the goal-keeper, was easily one of the best goals of the season. He is slowly maturing and is almost ready to take up the ‘Cesc’ role in the team.
Season Grade: 7.5/10
Next Season Verdict: With two seasons in his belt, Arsenal fans would expect more from Nasri next season, in terms of both goals and assists.

Thomas Vermaelen

Many experts believe, the transfer of Vermaelen was the best of the lot in the transfer window a year back. The Belgian captain had a very sound season, where he gave a spirited display forming a formidable partnership with William Gallas.
Season Grade: 7.5/10

Sports News - January 21, 2010

Next Season Verdict: He is one of those few players who’ll find their name in the startling line-up without any worry next season.

William Gallas

Ever since the captain’s arm-band was stripped off Gallas, he has been a down-to-earth performer for Arsenal. He makes up for his slower pace with efficient tackling and timely ball clearance. A long-term calf injury kept him out for the last part of the season.
Season Grade: 7.5 /10
Next Season Verdict: He is out of contract. It remains to be seen if Arsene extends it, we have a feeling he won’t.

Sol Campbell

Sol’s return to Arsenal is what perfect dreams are made of. The injury of Gallas was a perfect timing for him to directly find a place in the starting lineup. Along with solidity, the guy brings in massive experience and most importantly a title-winning know-how.
Season Grade: 7.5/10
Next Season Verdict: He’ll stay for at least one more year as a very decent third-choice center back.

Robin Van Persie

From his debut for Arsenal in 2004, we have hardly seen the gifted Dutch striker playing an entire season – such has been his luck with injuries. This season was no different. He was in top form before the injury and could only come back at the final stages of the season when our fate was already decided.
Season Grade: 7.5/10
Next Season Verdict: He’ll be in first choice striker by a mile, along with goals, he’ll now share leadership responsibilities with Cesc.

Alex Song

The guy who has improved the most in this season is Alexander Song. He was a permanent fixture in the center of midfield as he patrolled across the field just above the defence. The Cameroonian made a solid impact this season and will look to continue with his great form.
Season Grade: 8.5/10
Next Season Verdict: He’ll stay and probably compete another CDM if Wenger plans to buy one.

Cesc Fabregas

The captain and club talisman had his best season for Arsenal scoring 15 times and assisting 16 goals. Cesc, with his unmatched vision, defense-piercing passes and exceptional goal-scoring knack, is easily the club’s biggest asset. And when you want to win the title, you would ideally want your biggest asset to be available throughout the season. That did not happen! In the final stages of the season, when we needed him the most, he was out injured and probably cursing himself. Few of the moments of the season include his solo-goal against Spurs, his incredible long run and a fantastic finish against Aston Villa and a left-leg volley against Blackburn.
Season Grade: 9/10

Football - Stoke City v Arsenal FA Cup Fourth Round

Next Season Verdict: Sadly, we don’t have a verdict. Our captain was born with a different DNA , which clearly doesn’t match the one that probably Tony Adams carried. It’ll be a shame for us and probably even for Arsene, if his cherished possession leaves the club after this season for greater glory, for better football, and most importantly, for the immaculate conception of a silverware.

  • nasalGooner

    a 5.5 to silvestere? are you doing crack? Barcelona wasnt the only game he screwed up.

  • @nasalGooner: Sylvy was not that bad in the remaining league games. He did play a very decent/safe game whenever called upon. I stand with the ratings!

  • nasalGooner

    I severely disagree and threaten to KEEEL YOU.. from HERE.. till you are DEAD. And do it AGAIN.
    at best i can rate him a 2/10 [and that’s being very generous of me]

  • shyam

    @nasalgooner i think you need to see the number of games sylvy was given. i think he put a decent show. 5.5 is okay

  • shyam

    Worth mentioning about Vermaelen is the fact that he is the highest scoring defender in the PL with 7 or 8 goals I think.

  • Silvester deserves 3.5/10
    Gallas 6/10

    Manuel Almunia 5/10