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Arsenal player ratings vs Crystal Palace in disastrous 3-0 defeat

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Arsenal suffered a huge blow to their top four aspirations as goals from Jean-Philippe Mateta, Jordan Ayew and Wilfried Zaha consigned the visitors to a 3-0 defeat against Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Monday.

After 16 days away from the action Mikel Arteta had hoped to have players back fit in time for the trip to Selhurst Park, but while Aaron Ramsdale returned, Takehiro Tomiyasu was joined by Nicolas Pepe and Kieran Tierney in missing out.

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That meant Leno moved to the bench, Nuno Tavares came in at left-back and Cedric Soares started his eighth league outing in succession for the Gunners.

Injuries meant that there were first senior involvements for Marcel Flores and Mazeed Ogungbo, who were both on the bench.

Arsenal player ratings vs Crystal Palace as Gunners’ top four hopes suffer huge blow with awful 3-0 Premier League defeat

The hosts took the lead shortly after the 15 minute mark when Andersen climbed over Tavares on a deep free-kick to nod the ball into Jean-Philippe Mateta’s path, who made no mistake from three yards.

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It soon became two when another defensive disaster saw Gabriel and Tavares get themselves into a huge mess, one that finished with Jordan Ayew firing beyond Ramsdale.

The Gunners’ best chances of the second half came after the hour mark with Smith Rowe firing straight at Guaita and Odegaard hitting a bobbled effort wide from a good position.

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Having been denied a penalty of their own, Palace were awarded one that Zaha made no mistake from, all the while Partey went off injured.

This was, in every conceivable way, the worst possible outcome. An unmitigated disaster.

Goalkeeper & Defenders

Aaron Ramsdale (GK) – 5/10 – Got sold short on so many back passes that put him under needless pressure, with some balls either short or overhit. As for the goals, he couldn’t do much about any of them.

Cedric Soares (RB) – 4/10 – Was getting dominated physically down his side with Wilfried Zaha causing him countless problems. Caught in no-man’s land so often and was bullied from the first minute to the last.

Benjamin White (CB) – 4/10 – Some of his defending was far too casual. There was no conviction in his headed clearances, physical certainty in his duels and even his passing lacked its usual silkiness.

Gabriel (CB) – 3/10 – Without Tierney to his left he looked horribly exposed. That doesn’t excuse his own shakiness with and without the ball though, as indecision seeped into his game. His passing was dreadful on the night.

He looked like someone who’d been up all night with a newborn baby.

Nuno Tavares (LB) – 3/10 – His last start for Arsenal came against Nottingham Forest and the level of performance wasn’t far off from that night. With Tierney set to be out for the season, it’s a massive worry. Nuno was at sixes and sevens positionally, weak in the duels and panicked on the ball.

He was/is not ready. In the slightest.

Midfielders

Martin Odegaard (AM) – 4/10 – Could not get on the ball enough with Palace closing down central areas so tightly. When he did assume possession it looked like he’d make things happen, but the spaces were so congested by a superb Palace midfield that he

Even still, his technical level plummeted. When Martin Odegaard’s touch is off you know it’s no your day.

Thomas Partey (DM) – 3/10 – Partey’s passing was horrendously loose, inaccurate and nowhere near the level it has been over the past few months. His energy couldn’t be faulted, pushing up to press the Palace midfielders and nipping in to tackles, but absolutely nothing came off for him.

The quality was just lacking. Everywhere.

Granit Xhaka (AM) – 4/10 – Was a passenger. Tried to inject some physicality with touch-tight challenges and grappling, but it did nothing for Arsenal. Completely overrun in midfield, before moving to left-back and losing his head, as per.

Forwards

Bukayo Saka (RW) – 5/10 – Barely got sight of the ball, yet if anything was to happen for Arsenal it was going to come down the right. Tyrick Mitchell showed why he’s got the second best tackling success in the league as he didn’t give Saka a sniff down the outside, forcing him into central areas where Palace were well-positioned.

Alexandre Lacazette (ST) – 3/10 – Totally anonymous. Offered nothing whatsoever. His last performance against Villa was arguably his weakest in the current run of form, only to be overtaken by this one. Could not hold the ball up to save his life.

Emile Smith Rowe (LW) – 5/10 – Much like Saka there was nothing giving for Smith Rowe, who tried to make things happen down the left but struggled with having Nuno on that side who was at sixes and sevens.

Coming more centrally with Martinelli holding the width, there was no way through a drilled Palace side who gave Smith Rowe, and Arsenal, next to nothing. Still, he was one of few who could at least leave knowing he offered something.

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