Arsenal ratings v Köln: Welbeck and Giroud struggle in poor defeat

Date published: Thursday 23rd November 2017 8:14

Arsenal did secure their place as top spot in Group H despite a 1-0 loss to Bundesliga strugglers FC Köln on Thursday night.

Sehrou Guirassy scored the decisive goal as he went down under a challenge from Mathieu Debuchy and the striker stepped up to despatch the resulting spot kick.

 

Starting XI

David Ospina: Didn’t have much to do up until the penalty decision, and could do nothing about that. Unlucky not to have a clean sheet. 6

Mathieu Debuchy: Was penalised for a clumsy challenge (albeit a harsh call) on Sehrou Guirassy for the penalty and the opening goal, but other than that was impressive. Worked very hard. 7

Per Mertesacker: Was rarely troubled by a one-dimensional Köln attack and looked comfortable throughout. 7

Rob Holding: Like his centre-half partner, didn’t have much to do and looked confident throughout. 7

Calum Chambers: Was given a chance at full-back but found himself straying too narrow too often. That said, not a bad performance. 6

Mohammed Elneny: Didn’t grab the game by the scruff of the neck like expected and was often found to be lacking tempo. 6

Francis Coquelin: Came close to breaking the deadlock during the first half but other than that was unspectacular. 6

Ainsley Maitland-Niles: An energetic and bright performance on the left flank. Encouraging for Arsene Wenger. 7

Jack Wilshere: Got the ball in dangerous areas, made some good decisions on the ball and was the one really forcing the game for the Gunners. 7

Danny Welbeck: Got some minutes under his belt, but that’s about the nicest thing that can be said. Subbed at half-time, largely ineffectual. 5

Olivier Giroud: Must have been the most frustrated man on the pitch. Feeding off scraps and didn’t have one major opportunity apart from a ball brought down in the area which was well cleared. 6

Substitutes

Alex Iwobi (for Welbeck, 45′): Certainly had more impact than Welbeck and worked hard, but looks a bit short on confidence. Perhaps could have done with a start. 6

Reiss Nelson (for Chambers, 67′):  Came on to try and create for Arsenal but just wasn’t really the right situation for him to thrive in. 6

Eddie Nketiah (for Debuchy, 84′): N/A

 

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