Arsenal 4-1 CSKA Moscow: Player ratings as Arsenal emphatically beat Russians in Europa League

Arsenal 4-1 CSKA Moscow: Player ratings as Arsenal emphatically beat Russians in Europa League

An impressive attacking performance gives Arsene Wenger's side a comfortable lead heading into next week's second leg in Moscow.

jordan-owusu-adu
Jordan Owusu-Adu

Arsenal finshed this match off within 35 first half minutes with a ruthless attacking display that overpowered CSKA Moscow and continued their recent run of impressive form. 

Aaron Ramsey got the ball rolling after just nine minutes slamming home from close range. Aleksandr Golovin’s stunning free-kick brough CSKA level six minutes later, however Alexandre Lacazette's penalty and Ramsey's beatiful backheeled volley gave Arsenal an early cushion. Lacazette's clincal finish completed the scoring with 15 minutes left of the first half, allowing the gunners' a relatively comfortable ride to the final whistle. 

Here's how the team rated: 

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Mixed night defensively

Petr Cech: 6 - Could do nothing about Golovin’s world class free-kick. Decent distrubution his only contribution as his goal was rarely in serious trouble.

Hector Bellerin: 7 - Given the freedom of the right-wing at times in the first half and continued to be an attacking threat down in the second half with some well placed crosses into the box.

Shkodran Mustafi: 7 - Improved distribution from Sunday’s win over Stoke City, along with some well timed tackles. Some rash decision making however could be punished against the better sidies' left in the competition.

Laurent Koscielny: 6 - Crazy foul that led to away goal for CSKA, and struggled on occasions against Ahmed Musa’s pace. Like Mustafi, solid distribution allow front players to attack at will.

Nacho Monreal: 7 - Solid performance from the Spaniard as usual. Rarely tested defensively and timed his overlapping runs well throughout the match.

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Top quallity attacking highlight of the night

Granit Xhaka: 7 - Continued improvement in defensive situations, however picked up a yellow card for characteristic wild challenge. High standard of passing enabled numerous slick passing moves.

Jack Wilshere: 6 - An off night for the Englishman. Lost the ball far too often through heavy touches and misplaced passes. Never shied away from the ball however, showing strong mentality and commitment till the end.

Aaron Ramsey: 8 - Fantastic all round performance from the Welshman, whose finish for his second goal was stunning. A constant goal threat with his late runs into the box and unlucky to not complete his hat-trick after hitting the post. Showed why he needs to be given extended deal at the Emirates.

Henrik Mkhitaryan: 7 - It’s clear he is loving being part of such an attack minded team, his connection with Mesut Ozil was clear throughout his performance. Unlucky to come out of a clash of knees worse than his opponent and subbed as a result. Wenger will be hoping the Armenian will be available for selection sooner rather than later.

Mesut Ozil: 9 - The best player on the pitch by a mile. Collecting three assists, the German’s passing was exquisite all night, and his ability to find space all over the pitch was a joy to watch. Effortless at times, this was a performance worthy of the Champions League rather than the Europa League.

Alexandre Lacazette: 8 - After converting a penalty on his return to the team on Sunday, the striker picked up where he left off during his first starting in two months. Cooly converting from the spot again for his first goal, his first touch and finish for his second was top class, showing how lethal he is when his team-mates play to his strengths. A few more performances like tonight’s and he may be making a return to Lyon’s Parc Olympic Lyonnais for the Europa League final.

Substitutes

Mohamed Elneny: 6- Neat and tidy as usual with from Elneny when brought on for Wilshere to tighten up the midfield. Could well be a valuable player for Arsenal as they look to end the season on a high note.

Danny Welbeck: 5 - Missed an awkward chance from close range, Welbeck wasn't really given enough opportunities to affect the match.

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