Arsenal played PSV in the Champions League and Tottenham in the Premier League. Arsenal dominated PSV in the Champions League, but endured a disappointing 2-2 draw against Tottenham. Let’s discuss these matches in greater detail.
Arsenal 23-24 Matches 6-7: Arsenal’s Defense Held Firm Against PSV But Struggled Against Tottenham
Arsenal’s defense deserves plenty of praise for the performance against PSV. The Gunners kept a clean sheet in that game and largely limited the threat of PSV’s attack. Raya made four saves and distributed the ball well.
Gabriel Magalhaes, Ben White, William Saliba, and Oleksandr Zinchenko all played well against PSV. Saliba even demonstrated his composure on the ball in one impressive moment against PSV. Unfortunately, Arsenal’s defense faltered against Tottenham.
Son is an excellent player and Arsenal did not do enough to slow him down as he scored twice. Saliba played well, but the rest of the defense could have been better. Neither of Tottenham’s goals were Raya’s fault, although his distribution was a bit lacking at times. In fact, Raya made an excellent save against Tottenham, so he doesn’t deserve too much blame for the draw. However, the midfield is deserving of plenty of blame for the Tottenham draw.
Arsenal 23-24 Matches 6-7: Arsenal’s Midfield Was In Control Against PSV But Did Little Against Tottenham
The Gunners’ midfield is very good on its best day and enjoyed 58% possession against PSV. Declan Rice stopped several PSV counterattacks. Kai Havertz also had a pretty good game.
Martin Odegaard is the standout player from Arsenal’s midfield in the game against PSV. The stats show this. Odegaard had one goal, 82 touches, three shots on target, and completed 91% of his passes in that game. Odegaard is the Man of the Match against PSV.
Unfortunately, the midfield deserves quite a bit of blame for the draw against Tottenham. Odegaard did very little in that game, as did Fabio Vieira. Declan Rice played well, but he had to be substituted at halftime. Jorginho replaced Rice and his mistake is what directly led to Tottenham’s second goal.
Arsenal’s midfield also did not retain possession well against Tottenham. The Gunners had only 46% possession in that game. Arsenal needs Declan Rice to recover from his injury quickly, since everything fell apart in the midfield against Tottenham after he was subbed off.
Arsenal’s Attack Blew Away PSV But Lacked A Clinical Edge Against Tottenham
PSV could not cope with Arsenal’s attack much at all. The Gunners won 4-0 and got eight shots on target in total. Bukayo Saka scored Arsenal’s first goal and got the assist for Trossard’s goal. Trossard scored and provided the assist for Gabriel Jesus’s goal.
Reiss Nelson came on in the second half and got the assist for Martin Odegaard’s goal. Arsenal could have scored more than four goals against PSV. Unfortunately, Arsenal’s lack of a clinical edge against Tottenham is part of the reason why that was a draw instead of an Arsenal win.
Arsenal did manage six shots on target against Tottenham, but only scored twice. Gabriel Jesus missed a big chance in the first half. Eddie Nketiah did very little against Tottenham and could have gotten sent off because of a bad tackle. Leandro Trossard’s absence is noticeable in Arsenal’s attack, especially with Gabriel Martinelli also injured. Arsenal must be far more clinical in its next match.
Manager Ratings for Arteta: 9/10 vs. PSV and 6/10 vs. Tottenham
Arteta is deserving of praise for his management of the PSV game. He set the team up well and made good substitutions, particularly Reiss Nelson’s introduction. Arsenal dominated that match from start to finish.
However, he deserves criticism for not setting the team up well to slow down Son in the Tottenham match and for making poor substitutions in that game. Subbing on Jorginho backfired very quickly and very significantly and Emile Smith-Rowe should have gotten more playing time. Arteta receives a 9/10 rating for the match against PSV and a 6/10 rating for the match against Tottenham.
Arsenal Plays Brentford in the League Cup Before Facing Bournemouth
Next, Arsenal will play Brentford in the League Cup before traveling to the Vitality Stadium to take on Bournemouth in the Premier League. Hopefully, Arsenal wins both matches. It is a good bet that Arsenal will defeat Bournemouth.
Check back next week for more Arsenal content.