Arsenal secured a passage into the fourth round of the Carabao Cup after a comfortable win against AFC Wimbledon on Wednesday.
Arsenal secured a comfortable 3-0 victory over League One side AFC Wimbledon at the Emirates Stadium to secure their passage into the fourth round of the Carabao Cup. Goals from Alexandre Lacazette, Emile Smith Rowe and Eddie Nketiah were enough to get the win, as the Gunners utterly dominated from start to finish.
The win was widely expected in the build-up to the game, as Arsenal came into the clash with consecutive wins in the Premier League. Lacazette opened the scoring from the penalty spot after Gabriel Martinelli was tripped in the box. The Gunners failed to add another before the half-time whistle despite many tries.
After some frenzy inside the box, Smith Rowe then added the second goal from close range in the next half. Eddie Nketiah later put the game beyond doubt, as he scored from a brilliant backheel flick from the Cedric Soares’ cutback.
The Dons proved unthreatening all evening, as they watched Arsenal wriggle their way through in attack, who could have scored more. Bukayo Saka came close in the dying period to add a fourth, only for the Wimbledon keeper to save superbly from his well-struck shot.
Here are the player ratings from Arsenal’s victory over Wimbledon in the Carabao Cup third-round clash.
Bernd Leno – 6/10
The Wimbledon attackers barely tested Leno all evening. In light of being dropped recently, the German might have wished for some action in his box. Otherwise looked in control in his area and was decent on the ball.
Cedric Soares – 6/10
Arteta clearly instructed him to take all corners on his side, with most of them pretty underwhelming. Did fine on his side, as he made a telling contribution with an assist for Nketiah’s goal with a cutback. However, his performance was average and not enough to oust Takehiro Tomiyasu, who has been impressing since arriving, off his perch.
Rob Holding – 6/10
Barely had anything to do all game, as Wimbledon attackers hardly threatened Arsenal’s central defence. Arteta will be pleased to get some minutes into Holding’s legs as the season begins to grow on the team.
Pablo Mari – 6/10
Mari gave a decent response after recently being dropped from the side. Like Holding, he barely had anything to do but was in total control of central defence from start to finish. Matches like these should help the defender build some confidence after some disappointing games earlier in the season.
Nuno Tavares – 6.5/10
He has shown a different side to his style, and output in each new game played. Against Wimbledon, he was very aggressive in attack and made those strong runs that could be developed to make him more lethal. Unlucky not to score, as his effort hit the post,
Thomas Partey – 7/10
As Partey works his way to total fitness, these are games to help him get there. Took control of the midfield from the start and guided play in his style. Arteta took him off around the hour mark with the North London Derby on Sunday in mind.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles – 6/10
He got another chance to play his preferred midfield role and did fine. Maitland-Niles did have a few bad moments when he had lapses of concentration. Otherwise was in a good state throughout the match.
Albert Sambi Lokonga – 6/10
Lokonga put in another solid performance to give Arteta a selection headache ahead of Sunday. The Belgian looked composed and comfortable both as a no.6 & 8. He has the attacking mentality in his game but showed great awareness defensively.
Gabriel Martinelli – 5.5/10
The rawness visible during Martinelli’s first two seasons seems to have disappeared a bit, as the Brazilian is under redevelopment to become a different player. He was energetic in the final third and won the penalty. He does have to prove a lot more to Arteta before being afforded regular game time in the Premier League.
Alexandre Lacazette – 7/10
Lacazette exemplifies how a lacklustre display can be made to look glossy. The Frenchman scored and assisted in making it seem all shiny in the end, but he has to prove his overall worth to the manager before starting games. From a statistical point of view, it was his eighth goal in nine starts in all competitions.
Eddie Nketiah – 6/10
Hard to see him get regular football this season, but he did put in a decent shift despite many sloppy moments. He got a goal to his name eventually to prove his worth as a finisher.
Emile Smith Rowe – 6.5/10
He came into the game to add some creativity and got himself a goal to show for. Arteta wanted Smith Rowe to play from a free-eight position as he continued experimenting with the youngster in midfield.
Bukayo Saka – 7/10
Saka came and instantly added more energy into the attack. He played a key role in both second-half goals and looks ready to take on Tottenham in the North London Derby on Sunday,
Folarin Balogun – N/A
He came on late in the game to get some minutes under his belt but wasn’t enough to give a rating.