Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette struggled while the rest of the team was also poor as Arsenal lost 0-3 to Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium.
It was Aston Villa who started the game brightly, with John McGinn netting within a minute after kick-off, only to see the goal get chalked off for offside in the build-up. The visitors got their deserved opener in the 25th minute, when Bukayo Saka, under pressure from Trezeguet, turned a Matt Targett cross into his own net.
Alexandre Lacazette ought to have equalised for Arsenal before half-time, but sent his header over the bar. Soon after the break, Trezeguet forced a save from Bernd Leno while Jack Grealish missed a great chance as well. Meanwhile, substitute Nicolas Pepe came close for Arsenal minutes after coming on.
However, it was Villa who got the next goal to effectively kill the contest, with summer signing Ollie Watkins heading home a Ross Barkley cross. The former Brentford man got his second of the night moments later, applying the finishing touches on a pass from Grealish to heap further misery on Arsenal.
Defeat at the Emirates.#ARSAVL 🔴 0-3 ⚫️ (FT)
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) November 8, 2020
It was a disappointing performance at home from Mikel Arteta’s men and here’s how we rated the performances of the Gunners’ stars on the night.
Bernd Leno: 5/10
The German international was let down by his defence big time on the night, and there was very little that he could have done to stop any of Villa’s goals. Did make a decent stop to deny Trezeguet in the second half. Cruel irony that Emi Martinez has more clean sheets in the Premier League at the Emirates this season (1) than Leno.
Rob Holding: 3/10
Preferred over David Luiz after his strong performance against Manchester United last weekend, the Englishman struggled to get to grips to the movement and sharp link-up play of Grealish and Barkley, who gave him the run-around all game long. Two of Villa’s goals on the night came from his side.
Gabriel Magalhaes: 3/10
While Gabriel has been one of Arsenal’s best players of the season so far, the Brazilian had a night to forget against the Villans. Found it difficult to deal with the brilliant Watkins throughout the game. Wasn’t his composed self while in possession either, with his distribution a let-down on occasion.
Kieran Tierney: 5/10
— Stadium Astro 😷 (@stadiumastro) November 8, 2020
Was Arsenal’s best player on the night, although it is nothing to shout about. Got forward and played some enticing crosses into the box. But, was found wanting at the back as he had trouble containing the dynamic Aston Villa attackers. An early comical gaffe on the ball almost ended up hurting his team.
Hector Bellerin: 3/10
The Spaniard had some positive moments in the first half in terms of his attacking play. But, he was given a torrid time by Grealish and the overlapping Matt Targett all game long. Suspect positioning, lack of awareness allowed the Villa attackers to make the most.
Thomas Partey: 5/10
Thomas Partey was the only Arsenal player to produce a shot on target in the first half against Aston Villa. https://t.co/NRGw5pFBnQ
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) November 8, 2020
Started well in the middle of the park, playing some eye-catching cross-field passes into Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Picked up a thigh injury and struggled from thereon, before being taken off at half-time.
Mohamed Elneny: 4/10
Handed a starting berth ahead of the likes of Joe Willock and Granit Xhaka after his all-action performance against Manchester United, Elneny was a shadow of himself from last weekend. Found it tough to break up play, more so following Partey’s submission, while he wasn’t progressive and forward-thinking enough with his distribution.
Bukayo Saka: 2/10
A rare off night for the teenage starlet, who lost Trezeguet in the lead-up to Villa’s opener, before sticking his leg out to score an own goal. Showed some improvement after the half-time break but wasn’t able to alter the course of the game.
Preferred over Nicolas Pepe once again on the right flank, the Brazilian struggled to get going on the night. Slowed things down when in possession way too often, while hardly showing any intent to take opponents on. Had a chance in the second half but dragged his effort wide. Hooked off after the hour-mark.
Alexandre Lacazette: 2/10
Alexandre Lacazette had fewer touches (9) than any other player on the pitch in the first half at the Emirates and won 0/3 contested duels.
And missed *that* chance. 😬 pic.twitter.com/kIanf0Wlun
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) November 8, 2020
Should have pulled Arsenal level before half-time, but sent his header well over from a very good position. Conceded possession a tad too easily at times, while his movement and running wasn’t always sharp either. Has now gone six games without a goal in all competitions, with his last coming in September.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: 2/10
Another disappointing outing for the Arsenal captain, who was pretty much taken out of the game by some good defensive work by Matty Cash and Trezeguet. Hardly had a sniff at goal throughout the night, made zero dribbles, had zero shots on goal. With him being ineffective on the left and Lacazette struggling, perhaps it’s time for Arsenal to play him through the centre.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang failed to take a single shot today, the third time he has done so in a Premier League game this season.
He has scored just 2 goals in 717 league minutes this season. 🧐 pic.twitter.com/u0640X2rl4
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) November 8, 2020
Dani Ceballos: 3/10
Sent on for the injured Partey at half-time. Made a goal-line clearance, which was as good as it got for the Real Madrid loanee. Had little to no impact on the creative side of things.
Eddie Nketiah: 3/10
Replaced Lacazette for the final thirty minutes or so. Hardly did anything of note during this cameo.
Nicolas Pepe: 5/10
Came on for Willian a little after the hour mark. Was bright in his short time on the field. Missed narrowly with a curling effort after cutting in from the right flank.