Arsenal fell to a 2-0 defeat against Manchester United in America on Sunday evening.
It was a first half to forget for Arsenal. The Gunners started brightly and controlled the opening stages. But a potshot from Bruno Fernandes saw Aaron Ramsdale poorly parry the ball into the net. A second soon followed when Gabriel made a huge error, allowing Jadon Sancho a free run on goal.
The second half saw Arsenal control proceedings but the game was slow, lots of fouls and delays in play. The Gunners didn’t look quite sharp enough in front of goal and only created a couple of clear chances in the game.
Here’s how I rated the players:
Ramsdale – 4 – Did really poorly for the Manchester United opener and then didn’t have a lot to do. Was also poor by his standards on the ball.
Timber – 6 (off 58) – Played inverted on the right side, a-la Zinchenko. Struggled like much of the Arsenal team to fully find rhythm in that first half, but did show glimpses of quality and looks comfortable all across the pitch.
Saliba – 6.5 (off 70) – Assured.
Gabriel – 5 (off 65) – Big error to give Manchester United their second goal, but did well otherwise.
Tomiyasu – 5.5 (off 45) – Did well in some battles, but looked off the rhythm on the ball and in the system. Understandable given he was injured for most of 2023 and was playing as the left-back in this one.
Rice – 5.5 (off 58) – Will be disappointed to not have got more involved and help Arsenal control the game. His first start and clear relationship and pattern building needed.
Odegaard – 6 – Quiet game by his standards. United cut off his supply lines well.
Havertz – 6 (off 70) – Like Rice, looked like a newbie in the first half. In the second period, he improved and got more involved with some nice touches. But he will need to do more to see Arteta select such an attacking midfield (Odegaard and Havertz) against opposition like Manchester United.
Saka – 7 (off 70) – Looked Arsenal’s biggest threat whenever he got the ball. Should’ve had an assist if Martinelli converted in the first half.
Martinelli – 5 (off 58) – Wasn’t at his best. Plenty of loose touches and missed a big chance (twice) at 0-0.
Nketiah – 4 (off 70) – I’m a bit worried about Eddie. He’s played so much in pre-season, up front and from the left, but he’s looked ineffective for most of that.
Tierney (on 45) – 6 – Added energy and thrust as usual but imperfect with on the ball execution.
Partey (on 58) – 6.5 – Played in the holding role for a bit, then when Jorginho came on he moved to right back. Some good moments.
White (on 58) – 6
Jesus (on 58) – 6
Trossard (on 70) – 6
Jorginho (on 70) – 6
Smith Rowe (on 70) – 7 – Looked bright. Hopefully he can stay fit and feature more in pre-season.
Vieira (on 70) – 6