Goals from Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli helped Arsenal return to winning ways as Newcastle United remained winless in the Premier League.
After the Liverpool mauling, Mikel Arteta demanded a response, and his Arsenal stars delivered a good performance to finish off Newcastle United at the Emirates. Second-half goals from Bukayo Saka and substitute Gabriel Martinelli were enough for securing three points, as the Gunners went level with fourth-placed West Ham United.
Arsenal ceded their quick approach to the game and looked content to hold the ball and progress it steadily. While they had plenty of attempts, only a handful were on target. Then, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang missed an absolute sitter to compound his recent sloppy form as both teams went into the break with the scoreless.
Arsenal came out strongly in the second half, putting the Newcastle defence under tremendous pressure. Soon, their efforts paid off as Saka, shifting on the left side, combined with Emile Smith Rowe and Nuno Tavares, getting the return ball to score past Martin Dubravka.
Newcastle had a few attempts on target, although nothing too problematic for Aaron Ramsdale. As the game went on, Callum Wilson found himself in a one on one situation with the Arsenal keeper before Tavares nudged the ball off his feet, and the incident was questioned as the Magpies demanded a penalty, but one wasn’t awarded.
Arsenal then progressed from the right side as Takehiro Tomiyasu lifted that ball towards substitute Martinelli who had broken away from his marker. The Brazilian shot a first time, delicate volley beyond Martin Dubravka to put the Gunners in a place of comfort. Here are the player ratings from Arsenal’s comfortable victory over Newcastle United.
Arsenal Player Ratings
Aaron Ramsdale – 8/10
Barring a wonderful save to lift the ball onto the crossbar, Ramsdale was barely troubled by the Magpies attack. Kept things quiet inside the box as he is proving to be a dominating presence in the area.
Takehiro Tomiyasu – 8/10
Tomiyasu was more on the front foot against Newcastle and nullified the threat posed by Allan Saint-Maximin with the help of Ben White. Got the assist for Martinelli’s second goal, while defensively, the Magpies attackers could not get past him all afternoon.
Takehiro Tomiyasu’s game by numbers vs. Newcastle:
89% pass accuracy
7 duels won
3 chances created
3 touches in opp. box
2 take-ons completed
Another great performance. 💪 pic.twitter.com/W2sMWeudQ2
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) November 27, 2021
Ben White – 7.5/10
Ben White had a comfortable afternoon at the back. Displayed calmness in the face of the physical pressure applied by Wilson, as his partner Gabriel did all the dirty work. He kept the Newcastle attackers at an arm’s length and always had a presence in the box when needed.
Gabriel – 7.5/10
Gabriel was tasked with managing the threat posed by Wilson, and he did the job superbly. The Newcastle striker could not get anything out of him physically or tactically, as the Brazilian protected his goal rather expertly.
Nuno Tavares – 8/10
The Arsenal fans grew frustrated at the Portuguese for his pointless shooting in the first period. Tavares came out as a different player after the break and proved crucial in assisting for the Saka goal. He also did the hard work defensively as the Magpies attackers could never beat him for pace. Showed immense energy even in the dying moments of the game.
Thomas Partey – 6.5/10
Partey doesn’t look at 100% yet, despite putting in a good shift for most parts of the game. While Newcastle midfielders could not gain any control in midfield, the Ghanaian made a very little contribution towards attacking the ball. Got taken off to preserve him for the Old Trafford encounter next week.
Sambi Lokonga – 8.5/10
Albert Sambi Lokonga (6) created more chances than the entire Newcastle side combined (5) this afternoon.
Twice as many as any other player on the pitch. 😎 pic.twitter.com/XEDCCxI7Kk
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) November 27, 2021
What Partey lacked in attacking the ball, Lokonga duly compensated, putting in a terrific display. Arteta was expected to drop him from the match altogether, only to be retained and produce a man of the match performance. Superb on the ball, always pushing it forward. He contributed immensely to everything Arsenal did right.
Bukayo Saka – 8.5/10
As Arsenal searched for an opener, Bukayo Saka produced some brilliant football in a 10-minute period after the restart that turned the match around. He took his goal well and changed the mood at the Emirates, which was slightly dull until that moment. Went off injured, which should be a worry for the Gunners considering their next game.
Bukayo Saka’s game by numbers vs. Newcastle:
6 duels won
5 penalty area entries
3 fouls won
3 ball recoveries
2 chances created
2 shots on target
Goals in back-to-back home games against Newcastle. ⚽️⚽️ pic.twitter.com/a6uDCL6ujx
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) November 27, 2021
Martin Odegaard – 6.5/10
A busy afternoon for the Norwegian who saw plenty of the ball. Odegaard progressed the ball well and often found options across the attacking third. He could have scored had he targetted the top corner from his direct free-kick, which was saved well by Dubravka.
Emile Smith Rowe – 7/10
Smith Rowe found it hard to find space to make his presence felt. Yet he had a few shots as well as a close-range header blocked by Dubravka. Played a key part in Saka’s goal combining well with him and Tavares.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – 5/10
Aubameyang cannot miss sitters like that. Had a brilliant opportunity from barely 3-4 yards to put Arsenal ahead, which he squandered. He looked increasingly out of touch from the game barring a few moments where he was bright.
Gabriel Martinelli – 7/10
The Brazilian proved an inspiring substitution from Arteta. Only 93 seconds after coming 0n, Martinelli delicately volleyed Tomiyasu’s ball beyond Dubravka to double Arsenal’s lead. After that goal, he showed confidence and attacked the final third with a directness missing in this Arsenal side.
Alexandre Lacazette – 5/10
Despite having a decent few minutes on the pitch, Lacazette was without any impact as he looked like a player who had played the entire 90 minutes rather than someone who had just come on. He also missed a chance created by Martinelli.
Mohamed Elneny – N/A
Arteta sent him to see the game out and provide some rest to Thomas Partey.
Newcastle United Player Ratings
Martin Dubravka – 6/10
Despite conceding twice in the second half, Dubravka was a reliable presence in the area. He had decent control over proceedings, making some decent saves, especially from Smith Rowe and Odegaard in the first period. Still much better than the other two goalkeepers in Newcastle’s ranks.
Emil Krafth – 6/10
After a decent first half, when the team defended in numbers, their individual qualities were tested in the next phase. Krafth was fairly comfortable with Arsenal’s attack, although he was given a tough time by Tavares and Saka when he switched on to his side.
Jamaal Lascelles – 4/10
The first Arsenal goal could have been prevented had Lascelles been alert to the danger posed by Saka. Instead of closing the attacker down, the defender chose to raise his hand and call for the flag when he played Saka onside. Poor decision making and showed by Newcastle need defensive upgrades in January.
Fabian Schar – 5/10
Poor display from the experienced defender, who was trouble vastly by Tomiyasu and Saka on his side, despite Aubameyang having an off day.
Matt Ritchie – 5/10
Found it tough going against Tomiyasu and Saka on the side. while Odegaard also occupied the right side for most parts compounding his problems. Could not take the pressure at times and was later substituted after having been booked.
Ryan Fraser – 5/10
Fraser’s strength’s lies in putting the ball into the box, which he barely did throughout the game. Furthermore, he was frustrated by Tavares’ pace and movements, always looking tense on the flank.
Joe Willock – 5/10
It wasn’t the return he would have envisaged. Willock was poor right from the start as he lacked ideas to progress the ball or take control in midfield. Moreover, he conceded a crucial free-kick close to the box, which might have been fatal if Odegaard had gotten it right.
Jonjo Shelvey – 6/10
Shelvey played some progressive passes when he was with the ball and had a goalbound shot saved fantastically by Ramsdale. Beyond that, he was kept quiet by the likes of Lokonga and Partey during the match.
Allan Saint-Maximin – 4/10
He barely had any effect on the game. Saint-Maximin found it hard to get past Tomiyasu, who controlled his flank expertly, with help from White. The Frenchman was expected to play a key role in this game, instead endured a quiet afternoon.
Joelington – 4/10
A poor outing for Joelington, who had looked bright in recent games. He could not get past the Arsenal defence as Gabriel and Ben White controlled their territory superbly.
Callum Wilson – 5/10
Wilson wasn’t allowed even a sniff of the goal by Gabriel, who dealt with the striker’s physical presence well. Had a shout for the penalty before Arsenal’s second goal, where in reality, he was in a good position to score rather than going down after minimal contact from Tavares.
Miguel Almiron – 5/10
Almiron was sent to salvage something from the game, which was already lost on Newcastle. He could not influence proceedings.
Jacob Murphy – 5/10
Yet another substitution made in an attempt to the complexion of the game as Murphy came on for the ineffective Joelington.
Isaac Hayden – N/A
Too little time on the pitch for a rating.