Arsenal vs Liverpool, 1-1: Full time analysis and player ratings
Written by Chris on April 17, 2011 22:30
This hurts. And it does for a number of reasons. Let’s start with the obvious, as soon as Luis Suarez’s effort hit the wall on minute 101, the referee should have blown the final whistle, waiting for the move to end was a terrible decision and it cost us the title.
It hurts because the players, just like against Barcelona, wanted to win the game, gave everything to do it and went very close to do it. One has to wonder why we approach games against the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United and Barcelona like this yet we fail to show the same energy, the same determination and the same grit against bottom-of-the-table opposition.
It hurts because yet again we showed that we have no Plan B. The last goal at the Emirates from open play came more than 270 minutes ago and there is a reason why. Theo Walcott was doing exceptionally well on the right, delivering some good crosses, but for who? His intentions were rarely read by his team mates and when presented with a good opportunity to hit the target from range we opted to pass it to the wingers.
It hurts because yet again, as soon as there was some pressure on the defensive department we panicked and collapsed. Andy Carroll and Luis Suarez had a shocking game, both of them, yet the Uruguay International was twice through because of a misunderstanding between our central pair and of course I have no idea what our players were thinking when they opted not to properly clear the ball in the 100th minute of the game.
And it hurts because this means that the second place in the table is no longer as safe as it was a month or so ago. It will not be easy to bounce back from this disappointing result and facing Tottenham Hotspur away from home is not what we need on Wednesday.
As always, whether you agree with my ratings or not, submit your own at Arsenal Interactive and make sure to share them on Twitter and Facebook.
Match Video Highlights
Match video highlights are available in the Videos section of our website. If not there yet, rest assured they will be up in a matter of hours.
Szczesny: 7,5 – Back with a bang. Made a number of “easy” saves throughout the game but also a great block in the 75th minute to deny Luis Suarez after a terrible misunderstanding between our two centre backs.
Koscielny and Djourou: 6,5 – Not much to do as we had plenty of possession yet when called into action they twice failed to understand each other in the second half giving Luis Suarez ample of space to advance and shoot. Luckily, we survived in both occasions.
Clichy: 6,5 – Not the busiest of afternoons for Gael who did well on the left, making a number of very good interceptions.
Eboue: 7 – Did Lucas dive? Yes, absolutely, but there was no need for Emmanuel Eboue to be so close to the Liverpool player knowing that all he had to do was to push him wide waiting for the referee’s final whistle. Shame, because Emmanuel had a splendid game on the right, always dangerous.
Wilshere: 5,5 – Running out of gas young Jack. Struggled in midfield and failed to make an impact when surging forward to help the offensive department.
Diaby: 6 – Brilliant start to the game with a great run and great header that went just wide, excellent in tracking back and block Suarez in the 27th minute but back to square one in the second half. Too many misplaced passes, too much jogging instead of helping at the back.
Fabregas: 6,5 – So and so from the captain. Produced a couple of very good passes such as the one for Emmanuel Eboue in the 45th minute but at the same time also produced a number of terrible passes in midfield. Did well to win the penalty that should have won us the game.
Nasri: 6 – Quiet game from Samir who should be more adventurous in the final third. Like for example I cannot understand why he opted to pass it wide to Theo in the second half instead of going for goal himself. Important to mention a nice flick for Robin in the 85th minute.
Walcott: 7 – I believe Theo had a very, very good game. Made a number of dangerous runs down the right but as I said in the introduction way too many times there was no one to meet his crosses.
van Persie: 6,5 – With the exception of one poorly taken effort, Robin was perfect from set pieces, delivering a number of excellent corners including the one for Laurent’s head in the first half. Unfortunately, he missed a golden opportunity in the 85th minute of the game although he kept his cool later on to give us the lead from the penalty spot.
Song, Arshavin, Bendtner: 6 – No big impact from the three subs. Alex Song, the one who tripped Lucas on the edge of the penalty area, seems to be a shadow of himself and yet again, one has to wonder why on earth Nicklas is playing on the right, we know it, he said it, everyone knows it, he is a central striker not a winger.