Gabriel Martinelli and Shkodran Mustafi impressed for Arsenal in their 2-1 loss to Eintracht Frankfurt at the Emirates on Thursday.
It a game of two halves where Arsenal dominated the first and failed miserably in the second period before eventually losing to Eintracht Frankfurt. The Gunners had a strong foothold in the early exchanges of the game, but they squandered a lot of chances and lacked the killer instinct in front of goal.
They had to wait till the dying embers of the first half when Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang arrowed them forward in the game. But, two second-half strikes by Daichi Kamada inspired a comeback from the German outfit. There were empty stands throughout the Emirates while some supporters unveiled the “Emery Out” banners after Frankfurt scored the second goal.
Arsenal have gone without a win for six consecutive games in all competitions and have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last nine games. However, the Gunners are still in the driver’s set in their group to qualify for the knockout stages of the Europa League. The Hard Tackle now runs the rule over Emery’s charges.
Emiliano Martinez: 6/10
The Argentinean goalkeeper hardly had anything to say in both the goals Arsenal conceded. In both instances, his defenders let him down. Martinez did come up with a few saves and was impressive even with his distribution.
Callum Chambers 5/10
Yes, he brought a lot of energy to the right side of the Arsenal defence, but he isn’t a natural right-back and with Frankfurt taking the attack to the opposition it was pretty evident. Chambers had a decent first half, but struggled when the visitors chose the attacking approach. He was kept on his toes by Filip Kostic and he failed to judge his intricate movements.
Shkodran Mustafi: 7/10
The usual scapegoat of the Arsenal fans after every defeat had a decent day at the office, at least better than most other players for the hosts. Mustafi kept the Frankfurt forwards at bay for much of the game, he displayed his aerial prowess and did not allow Goncalo Paciencia to impact the game with his physical presence. Hardly flawless, but he was better than his fellow defenders.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos: 4.5/10
His steep fall in quality has been like Arsenal’s form lately. The Greece international defender was once known for his calm and composed demeanour but that quality has gradually turned into massi9ve liability. He was clueless in defence and each time Frankfurt moved forward with more intent Sokratis made more mistakes.
Kieran Tierney: 5/10
Tierney has not at all done justice to all the hype created before his arrival from Celtic. However, that is not entirely his fault. While he is still new to the setup and environment he looked confused when venturing forward and doubling up with Bukayo Sako as well as when he stayed back and helped the defenders.
He was caught in between and even though he showed glimpses of his brilliance, overall it was a very disappointing performance.
David Luiz: 6/10
The experienced Brazilian featured in the double pivot alongside Granit Xhaka, where he was given the responsibility of breaking up play and doing most of the dirty work. Till the time Luiz was on the field, Arsenal had a strong foothold in the game, but a chest pain from a subsequent collision meant Luiz could not continue beyond 31 minutes.
Granit Xhaka: 6.5/10
Returned to the starting eleven after some time off and did a decent job in supporting Luiz early on. He added stability to the Arsenal midfield, but a knock right at the end of half-time saw the Swiss midfielder struggling. However, Xhaka continued despite all the trouble, but when Arsenal needed goals, Emery could have taken him off for a more attacking player.
Joe Willock: 5.5/10
The young attacking midfielder was at the heart of the Arsenal attack in the first half. He combined well with Saka and created a lot of openings in the Frankfurt defence. However, the panache and energy faded in the second half as he made mistakes and lost possession time and again.
Here again, Emery’s game reading was put to the sword as the fans thought he could have taken Willock off for someone like Nicolas Pepe or Alexandre Lacazette, as Arsenal were looking for a late equaliser.
Gabriel Martinelli: 7/10
The Brazilian forward has earlier showed that he can play from the middle as a striker and now he proved himself as a winger. It was from his move that Aubameyang scored and till the time he was there on the field, he had a spark of making things happen in the final third. He capitalised on Frankfurt’s shabby defence and troubled them with his pace and mazy runs.
Bukayo Sako: 5.5/10
The youngster terrorized the opposition in the reverse fixture and wanted to replicate something close to that. Saka troubled the ageing Frankfurt defence with his pace and also had a golden opportunity to score. However, his decisiveness from the reverse fixture was missing completely. He ran after balls just for the sake of it and the intent was missing in his play.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: 6/10
The Gambian international had one clear cut chance in the game and he found the back of the net. For the other chance he had a misunderstanding with Willock. Otherwise, Aubameyang was largely deprived of service form his midfielders. He struggled to create space and was isolated up front.
Matteo Guendouzi: 5/10
The Frenchman had a tough day at the office where he failed to provide that stability which David Luiz had in the midfield. Guendouzi has been overworked by Emery as the youngster has played more minutes than any other Arsenal player apart from Aubameyang this season in all competitions.
Mesut Ozil: 5/10
Ozil came on to add more creativity in midfield and it was Emery’s last throw of the dice. The German midfielder struggled to get going and hardly had time on the ball to create anything.
Lucas Torreira: 4/10
Bringing in Lucas Torreira for an injured Shkodran Mustafi, that too late in the game, when your team is chasing a goal, this scenario throws light on Emery’s risk-taking ability, or lack thereof, and also calibre to manage a club like Arsenal.