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Arsenal player ratings vs Aston Villa: Silky smooth Bukayo Saka torments Ashley Young

here’s how Mikel Artetanear Villa Park…

Bernd Leno 7

A spectator for most of the first half at the start of the Premier League since August but brave when he had to be in difficult conditions. Will surely be someone’s No1 next season.

Cedric Soares 7

Continues to exceed expectations by replacing Takehiro Tomiyasu. Reserve.

Gabriel 6

Not quite at his best, but suited up well with White as usual to muster the threat of Watkins.

Ben white 8

Becomes more assured week by week and fully deserves the England recall. Crucial for resisting late pressure.

Kieran Tierney 7

Has advanced more than in recent weeks, with more responsibility to provide width alongside Smith Rowe’s tendency to drift inside. Also alert with some vital defensive interventions.

Thomas Partey 7

Shot straight at Martinez when he was well placed early on, but it was another great display. So soft.

Granite Xhaka 6

Combined well with Smith Rowe in the first half and dampened recent attacking role after the break as Villa threatened. Reserved, of course.

Martin Odegaard 7

Played slightly less of a role in dictating business than lately, but still just as effective in possession. Rarely makes the wrong decision.

Emile Smith Rowe 8

Superb back in the XI. Arsenal kick into high gear when they win the ball.

Bukayo Saka 8

Took the tally for the season into double digits and tormented Ashley Young. I had to take a bit of kicking too, but it’s pretty hard.

Alexandre Lacazette 6

Fairly quiet afternoon, perhaps feeling the effects of three games in seven days. I should have played Odegaard for the clincher 15 minutes from time.

Substitutes

Nicolas Pepe (Saka 69′)

Eddie Nketiah (Lacazette 77′)

Rob Holding (Odegaard 86′)

Unused: Okonkwo, Tavares, Swanson, Lokonga, Elneny, Hutchinson.


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