Arsenal returned to action in the Premier League at the Emirates Stadium, hosting Nottingham Forest for their final home Premier League game before the World Cup. Arsenal produced a much better performance than in some recent matches, routing Nottingham Forest 5-0 in a dominant win. This win puts the Gunners back at the top of the Premier League table. Let’s get into the week 12 match review of Arsenal vs. Nottingham Forest.
Arsenal Week 12 Match Review: The Positives
There were quite a few positives to take from this Arsenal performance. Starting off with the Gunners’ defense, they defended incredibly well in this match. Nottingham Forest had few opportunities to score and only managed to get two shots on target in the entire match. Neither of those shots really troubled Ramsdale in goal, either.
Speaking of the defense, Ben White was the standout player in Arsenal’s back line in this match in my view. He was as composed on the ball as we have come to expect from him. He made good overlapping runs on Arsenal’s right side to support Saka and later Reiss Nelson.
White also did well to react to Partey’s mistake and block Lingard’s shot. Ben White played some good crosses into the box, as well. It was another top performance from White, who’s been Arsenal’s most consistent player this season in my opinion.
Partey played quite well despite his one mistake. He helped Arsenal play through Nottingham Forest’s low block and shielded the back four well for the most part. Partey also scored an excellent goal, his second of the season, to make it 4-0 Arsenal in the second half. He was a contender for Man of the Match.
Xhaka also played well in the midfield. He got forward and joined Arsenal’s attack on many occasions, proving to be a threat throughout the match. Granit Xhaka, along with Partey, helped control the game in midfield and contributed to Arsenal dominating possession in this match.
Martinelli played well and scored Arsenal’s first goal of the game. He could have had even more goals than just his one in this match. Gabriel Martinelli also worked incredibly hard throughout the match and should be quite pleased with his performance.
Gabriel Jesus played well, despite not scoring. He provided two assists and had a lively performance. Jesus pitched in defensively when necessary, as well. It is unfortunate not to see him on the scoresheet, but he played well regardless.
Reiss Nelson was an unexpected part of this match, following Saka’s injury in the first half. However, he was a game-changer, scoring twice and providing the assist for Thomas Partey’s goal. Nelson caused the Nottingham Forest defense all sorts of issues today and also pressed quite well. He won Man of the Match for me in this one, though there were several standout performers for the Gunners in this match.
Week 12 Match Review: The Negatives
The major negative for Arsenal in this match was the injury to Bukayo Saka. Saka only played 28 minutes in this match due to the injury. Hopefully, the injury isn’t too serious and Saka can return to the squad relatively soon. As one of Arsenal’s best players, Saka’s injury is definitely a major concern, but we can only wait and hope for good news about it.
Manager Rating: 10
Saka’s injury in the first half made this match more complicated than expected and presented Arteta with a critical choice regarding who should replace him. Arteta chose Reiss Nelson and Nelson repaid Arteta’s faith in him with a wonderful performance. The team as a whole played incredibly well in all areas, attacking with vigor and defending with composure. Arsenal also dominated possession and ruthlessly took advantage of Nottingham Forest’s inadequate defending in this match.
Arsenal Travel to Stamford Bridge Next
After their final Europa League group stage game, Arsenal travel to Stamford Bridge to play Chelsea in a crucial match. This match will definitely be a tough test against a well-coached team with plenty of quality. Hopefully, the Gunners can win once again and continue their positive momentum. I would bet on Gabriel Jesus scoring in this one, since it has been a little while since he’s gotten a goal in the Premier League.
Check back next week for our match review of Arsenal vs. Chelsea.