Southampton. Player Ratings

Cech. Terrific, even his distribution was good. Saved a couple of one on ones and made a spectacular flying save from Redmond.   9

Holding. Early to make this huge statement but this man has a touch of the Tony Adams – he could be that good. Calm, clever, determined and strong. 8

Mustafi. A welcome return and he seems very comfortable as the fulcrum of the back 3. A couple of times he was out of position which allowed S’ton to get behind the defence.  7

Monreal. I think he is a better attacker than Gibbs but also a better defender and he was very solid last night.   7

Ox. Made an energetic start but often his final ball was inaccurate. Made one lovely cross before injury.  6

Ramsey. Massive energy and ambition but as usual much of his work comes to nothing. Clever headed cross for Giroud. 7

Xhaka. He is becoming the metronome of the team. This is both good and bad as sometimes he delays his passes or goes sideways but I have high hopes for his future at AFC. Tried a couple of long-distance shots which was positive. No yellow card – again!!  7

Gibbs. Settling into his role but (and I know I keep saying this) he is not good enough in the opposition half. His crossing is not accurate, he is not on a wavelength with Sanchez. That said, he played well   6.

Ozil.  As always he worked hard. Made a lovely pass for Sanchez goal.  Love the bloke.   7

Welbeck. Plenty of runs but had poor service. I cannot recall him forcing a save from Forster.  6

Sanchez. Brilliant but oh so frustrating. Every game I despair as he gives away ball after ball then he pops up with another outstanding, match-winning goal   8


Bellerin. Doesn’t seem comfortable with the 3 at the back  system. Feels as though he needs the summer to re-group and come back fitter and faster.   5

Giroud.  Just on the pitch for a few minutes and scored to once again hit double figures for the season.   7

Mr. Wenger. Another clean sheet indicates that the Back 3 experiment is working. We have conceded just 3 goals in 5 games. Substitutions were as expected.  7

My MotM. Cech.  An outstanding performance

A competitive first half with Southampton dominating the opening 15 minutes, from then on Ramsey and Xhaka controlled the game and I was always confident we would win.

written by Big Raddy


107 Responses to Southampton. Player Ratings

  1. lance says:

    we need to play a back 3 of holding,mustafi and kos. monreal needs to replace gibbs. some brilliant passes are being received by gibbs who either turns and passes back , mis-controls or misses the cross badly. sanchez and monreal seem to have a good understanding towards the left hand side of the opposition box. monreal makes some good runs and sanchez’s vision is world class. welbeck will benefit from that as well.

  2. Big Raddy says:

    Lance. I agree.

  3. GoonerB says:

    Thanks Raddy

    Always wanted Gibbs to be a bit more but reluctantly I also agree Lance. Southampton had their moments but the fact we saw them out is positive. Not an easy place to go to these days is St. Marys so a 2-0 away win indicates a professional performance.

    Giroud scored so if I were Wenger I would re-install him as 1st choice striker for ever and ever 🙂

  4. mickydidit89 says:

    Thank you Erik

    First up, I totally agree with Lance. More height into the back three that way, and Monreal is certainly better left mid than Gibbs.

    On to ratings, and it’s interesting how you comment, rightly, on the poor balls and end product from Ox, Ramsey, Gibbs and Sanchez.

    During the game my fingers were just hovering over the keyboard about to let rip after yet another rubbish pass from Alexis, when bosh, goal, and what a goal.

    Thing is, when you play the back three number, you have so much defensive cover and solidity, it’s ok for the good players to try the tricky stuff as failing matters less. In attack we can play a higher risk game with more take-ons and stuff. I like it.

  5. VP of Oz says:

    Thank you BR
    So I have a selfish FFL question. Does anyone expect Gabriel to play over the next 2 games? Should I go for Holding?
    The defensive routine of Bell, Kos, Mustafi, Mon are gone.
    How many different combos have we had in the back 3 now and ox for Bell and gibbs playing. I’m lost…

  6. mickydidit89 says:

    Tricky one VP

    Don’t know the condition of Kos, but either way Arsene does seem to like Monreal and Gibbs.

  7. chas says:

    Thanks for yet another post, BR.
    You really ought to write more. 🙂

    I can’t really comment on the game as I didn’t watch it.
    It sounds as though the game could have swung against us early on, but thanks to Petr it didn’t.

    Last season this happened in the 19th minute and was followed by a slaughter of the unworthy.

    Yep, you’ve guessed it, Cuco Martina has only scored one goal for the Saints in his two seasons with them.

  8. chas says:

    Ask BR to get Viggo Bent-knee to sacrifice a goat during his gathering in the next couple of days.

    The entrails will surely tell the story of Arsene’s team selection for the weekend. 🙂

  9. chas says:

    That goal reminded me of this Thierry goal against Sparta Prague (except Cuco Martina’s was 10 yards further out!)

  10. chas says:

    You’ll be using just punctuation next!

  11. RC78 says:

    Cech – match winning performance –
    Holding – solid – 7
    Mustafi – fine return – 7
    Monreal – industrious – 7

    Ox – promising but can do better – 6
    Gibbs – promising but can do better – 6

    Ramsey – Hard working + one assist – 7
    Xhaka – Fine – 7

    Ozil – not bad, one assist – 7
    Sanchez – one goal, but frustrations – 7

    Wellbeck – 6

  12. Big Raddy says:

    11.17 Superb collection of goals. Roberto Carlos is still one of the best ever.

    Outside of the foot and the bend it creates is a thing of beauty and defies science (until Zed explains it to us 🙂 )

  13. mickydidit89 says:

    Are you a school teacher RC? 🙂

  14. mickydidit89 says:

    Oh come off it Erik, the Zed scientific claptrap is for atheists, not spiritual god fearing ritualists like us

  15. mickydidit89 says:

    What I would like to see Arsene do when it comes to substitution time (assuming we’re 2-0 up) is slot Elneny in next to Xhaka

  16. RC78 says:

    Giroud – impact substitution – 7
    Bellerin – must do better – 6

    MoTM – Sanchez for unlocking a tight game

    Lessons learned:
    – We need a LWB
    – We need a RWB
    – We need another winger as well
    – The back 3 seems to get the best out of Holding and Monreal so that means we need 6 CBs next year in our squad:
    Kos, Mustafi, Holding, Monreal and we have two spots left because BFG and Gabs MUST leave. What is the future of Chambers with us? In any case, we have to recruit at least one CB if we keep the back 3 as our formation
    – Xhaka is finding his rhythm, at last
    – Ramsey needs to be smarter on his runs and defensive duties
    – Ozil cannot deliver his best under this formation

  17. RC78 says:

    micky – just responding to BR’s posts with my grades

  18. VP of Oz says:

    Chas, forget Viggo, our defense needs more of the Freuchen type.

  19. wally says:

    Three at the back is relatively new concept in the premiership. Teams haven’t figured out how to defend or attack it, yet. They also don’t have the talent to attack it.

    More interesting to me is the power struggle at the top. The board saying we need we need to start evolving the club, start preparing for the future and wenger insisting he is Arsenal, he’s in charge and the rest of you and the future can fuck off.

    I’m wondering what others think of these developments. Whether wenger is arsenal, wenger is the future.? Is one man now bigger than the club? One man is the club?

  20. chas says:

    Did Wenger say any of that?

    I thought he said that while he was manager of the Club, no-one would be responsible for the technical side (i.e playing side) other than him.

  21. wally says:

    When he says there will be no Director of Football at the club as long as he’s there and that he’s in charge of the technical side what else is he saying but that he’s in charge and the rest of you, board and fans, can fuck off?

  22. Cheers Raddy

    TA is my 2nd most favourite Arsenal player. I like Holding but he has a long way to go before been compared to the great man. Until Holding manages Granada wearing a three piece suit on the touchline whilst having Isco order “two diet cokes waiter”, i reserve judgement.

    Wally, I think your reading to much into this. Wenger has his red lines and its up to Stan and the Board whether they accept them or not.

    Arsenal is always bigger than any individual and always will be. Even If the Pope or David Carradine were managing Arsenal they would eventually get the sack. Though they would probably last longer than Tony Adams.

    When Arsene leaves he will be get the respect he fully deserves. His early teams were one of the best and most attractive ever to grace English football and his methods and philosophy innovative and exciting.

    That’s how he will be remembered.

  23. wally says:


    Do you think wenger’s red lines are better for the club or better for wenger?

  24. The red lines are simply the conditions and boundary’s of which Arsene is prepared to work Wally.

    If the Board wish to instigate these “alluded” changes and Arsene refuses to work within them he will leave or they will sack him.

    Ultimately the Board owe a duty of care to Arsenal Football Club not to Arsene Wenger and the ultimate future strategic direction of the Club is there call.

  25. chas mobile says:

    So, no, he didn’t say any of that. 😆

  26. On a personal level, if the Board are thinking of major structural changes, including a Director of football, i hope that if it means losing Arsene they have a rethink.

    I believe that Arsene is the right man to take us forward but thats just my opinion and i can understand those who may think different.

  27. wally says:

    I think the lawyers would call it non-responsive. But i do appreciate you answering and with your follow on i understand why.

    Don’t be obtuse. If you watch the interview, the answer and the tone of the answer tells you exactly that.

    We now know why there hasn’t been any pronouncement on a new contract. There isn’t one. That this has been leaked to the press is perhaps a way of letting the fans, the players(?) know what is going on and why. Hopefully the board will stick to it’s vision.

  28. chas mobile says:

    Not obtuse at all.

    You said, “wenger insisting he is Arsenal, he’s in charge and the rest of you and the future can fuck off.” Is simply untrue.

    If you’d said that your interpretation of the interview was the above and what did others think of your viewpoint, then fair enough.

    But if anyone comes out with blatant falsehoods, they have to be pointed out.

  29. GunnerN5 says:

    “I believe that Arsene is the right man to take us forward but thats just my opinion and i can understand those who may think different.”

    Terry that is also my opinion, and I hope we are correct………

  30. wally says:

    If you’d like to quibble you have a point.
    And this is a blog where people state their opinion. I assume that people understand that i’m stating an opinion. Even terry understood that :).
    And i did ask people how they felt about it.

  31. mickydidit89 says:

    Hi Wally

    Genuine question as I don’t read newspapers or, when/where do the board make statements a la “The board saying we need we need to start evolving the club”

    I really am interested to read what they said.

  32. wally says:

    Here’s the problem with letting wenger carry on in his preferred manner.
    When he goes everything goes with him. Everything revolves around him. What big club works in that fashion? In what universe does that make any sense? The club would then have to start from scratch to build their own scouting networks, their own academy staff, their own set of contacts…..
    If you were worried about things falling apart after wenger left you need not worry any more. They most assuredly will. It’s a self-fulfilling set of circumstances. L’etat c’est moi!

    Not a set of circumstances that any responsible club should accept.

  33. mickydidit89 says:

    Surely one manager leaves, another comes in. The new man may bring an assistant or two, but that doesn’t constitute too much upheaval I wouldn’t have thought

  34. mickydidit89 says:

    Oh cool, thanks. I’ll read both

  35. mickydidit89 says:

    Urgh bit of a damp squib.

    Only words from a board member there came from Chips

    “”We are fully aware of the attention currently focused on the club and understand the debate,” the Arsenal chairman said. “We respect that fans are entitled to their different individual opinions but we will always run this great football club with its best long-term interests at heart.

    “Arsene has a contract until the end of the season. Any decisions will be made by us mutually and communicated at the right time in the right way.”

    ie nothing at all.

  36. GunnerN5 says:

    Not even damp Micky – it’s stone cold dead.

  37. mickydidit89 says:

    I was being polite GN5 🙂

    To be frank, I wouldn’t expect the board to say anything at all. There’s absolutely nothing to say or clarify.

    Must dash

  38. mickydidit89 says:

    Canteen staff? 🙂

    Ok, who knows, maybe it’s simply spin because he thinks people need an explanation about something, but so far I’ve heard nothing at all of any substance.

    I reckon to keep up with the times he could blame the Russians for something that hasn’t happened 🙂

  39. mickydidit89 says:


    I’m genuinely interested, but nowhere can I find anything the board have said other than simple nothings

    And I’m looking.

  40. Quite right GN5, we are on the same page.

    Wally, chas and Micky are not having a pop at you. They are just pointing out that all this talk of “change” is pretty much unsubstantiated and what Arsene says in public should not be misconstrued.

    The notion that Arsene is invincible is rubbish. He’s just an employee though admittedly, a very important one.

    In my experience the only time this may not apply is when emotion overalls logic. We have all seen examples were an employee escapes sanction because they are sleeping with the boss or are in possession of photographic evidence.

    When I don’t like someone I make sure I am in possession of a camera.

    Indeed, I managed to elevate myself to the position of chairman of the local ornithology association by use of a high powered photographic lens, though in my defence, down New River I am particularly friendly with a pair of Geese.

    Why would any Board members and Arsene have such an emotional connection? Kronoke married an heiresses so gets his rocks off by using his wig as a container whilst counting her money and Gazidis is South African so has no interest in love, only copulating whilst on safari.

    Arsene is quite right. Even under intense pressure and speculation he has maintained the stance of let’s concentrate on winning the Cup and trying to achieve what a month ago seemed the impossible task of qualifying for the Champions Leaque.

    Where is the talk of “losing the changing room” or “a club in crises” now? The sign of a great manager is the ability to turn a seemingly terrible situation around, and Arsene is achieving it. How many of his critics could do the same?

  41. chas says:

  42. chas says:

  43. chas says:

  44. chas says:

  45. chas says:

  46. chas says:

  47. Eddie says:

    you tell me why these children are not taken into care yet??!!

  48. Eddie says:

    actually, I am going to call police about it. That fat old cow should be jailed

  49. chas says:

  50. mickydidit89 says:


    Spuds last homer on sunday could be a weird one for them

    Hoping that Chavs win tonight, it could be like a wake in respect of just losing the league, but also, they’ll want to win the last game in their shitty little ground which will only help The Arsenal

    Any way you look at it, it’s a ROLF

  51. mickydidit89 says:

    Macron is 39
    His wife is 65

    Do Ladbrokes give odds on when the divorce/affair will happen?

  52. chas says:

  53. mickydidit89 says:

    Ok….weekend has begun

    Come on Chas, be fair now, what’s your Diane Abbott mis-speaking these days? 🙂

  54. chas says:

  55. mickydidit89 says:

    ha ha ha

    did you see her “mis-speak” line. I’m convinced she blackmails Corbyn and that’s why he can’t get shot of her

  56. mickydidit89 says:

    Great line by Pablo Casals, by the way

    Cello is my favourite noise. Viola simply a portable version.

  57. mickydidit89 says:

    Good. Sounds like Kos and Ox could be playing tomorrow

  58. chas says:

    Don’t want Ox to play if he’s going to twang his hammy.

  59. chas says:

    Is BR back from the beginning of summer festival or are you sharpening your Orc pencil?

  60. chas says:

  61. mickydidit89 says:

    Sorry, children collection.

    If you asked me if I’m doing a pre match? The answer is no.

    Should be done by a proper footbally person.

  62. Eddie says:

    shit!!!! Macron’s wife is REALLY 25 years older than him. that is very strange indeed.

  63. Eddie says:

    sol Campbell is a cretin. sorry Sol but it has to be said 🙂

  64. Eddie says:

    stoke away with Dean. Hard to be optimistic

  65. mickydidit89 says:

    It gets worse, Mrs Macron was young Emmanuel’s drama teacher at school

    Can’t remember, is Dean the red manc or spud?

  66. Eddie says:

    dean supports Tranmere allegedly, yeah right. it is just that they don’t have a football team there

    he is a Spud. Webb was the red Manc

    His drama teacher?? Dirty Frenchies, must have been rehearsing some roman plays

  67. Gööner In Exile says:


  68. mickydidit89 says:

    I’ve been left in the lurch Eddie. Sister and her Daughter just cancelled. Weekend plans in tatters. Pouring with rain and sea flat as a pancake.

    I kind of wish another Wally would be on here with a conspiracy theory. I need something to get my teeth into.

  69. mickydidit89 says:

    Dear Lord.
    Get yer pen out Exile 🙂

  70. Evening all

    Macron had to marry a mother figure. His father was a professor and mother a physician. The only affection he got as a kid when the school bully sat on him and the neighbours dog gave him a stare,

    He went on to work for Rothschild earning millions and then straight into politics.

    In other words, the mans a social retard who likes wearing nappies.

  71. Eddie says:

    Terry, will you stop???!!!! he is lovely, good looking, clever and there is nothing wrong with older women. A man 25 years younger than me would be about GiE’s age, lovely 🙂

    where the feck have you been Exile??

  72. mickydidit89 says:


    First thing the drip said was he going for a hard brexit.

    Good luck with that Emmanuel. You’re going to be stiffed by Mrs Merkel first, then May.

    I think the older woman fetish could just about kill him 🙂

  73. mickydidit89 says:

    Soiled nappies ahoy 🙂

  74. Gööner In Exile says:

    Bloody hell back for five minutes and Eddie is already making plans 🙂

    Been bloody busy, still bloody busy to be honest but thought I’d come say hello and if anyone is going to be down the Everton game I’ll meet you for a beer, be my one and only fixture of the season which is a disgrace.

    Although good news it seems like I don’t have to worry about booking a hotel 😉

  75. chas says:

    I was replying to ‘solied nappies ahoy’.
    Not GIE’s return.

  76. chas says:

  77. chas says:

  78. Gööner In Exile says:

    I’ve seen enough not to take offence Chas 🙂

  79. Good to see you on again GIE

    I understand how you feel. Self employed accountancy and raising a young family is hard work.

    That’s why I believe in having a mistress.

  80. Gööner In Exile says:

    Scarily G is a fully qualified JG next season which also means starting school, which also may mean Mrs Exile may finally come off Maternity Leave and do a bit of the leg work.

    In truth she is desperate to get away from the little buggers!

  81. Make sure you put George on a waiting list for season ticket or silver GIE.

    Life goes so quickly. I remember my little girls demanding presents as kids, asking for money as teens, and now one is married and the other engaged I voluntarily give them cash.

    I do it to maintain power over there husband and fiancée. My girls are mine, not theres.

  82. Ant says:

    We’ll be at the Kings Head with JC, GIE.

  83. Just found a pic of GiE and son on my twitter timeline so I reckoned he’d put his head above the parapet 😉

  84. Gööner In Exile says:

  85. Gööner In Exile says:

    I decided against putting him on ST waiting list, but JGs automatically become silver members, and have Silver Member rights. He can book tickets four weeks before me, anyone had any luck convincing Arsenal to upgrade their red membership for this reason?

    Reckon I might take him down for Emirates Cup.

  86. mickydidit89 says:

    Morning all

    Exile, what are advantages of silver over red?

  87. mickydidit89 says:


  88. Eddie says:

    grrrrrrr…..did you see chavs pre rehearsed/staged celebrations last night? Morons. I hate them.

  89. chas says:

    I’ve loaded Micky’s post into WP.
    Is BR not doing one for definite?

  90. chas says:

    Why would you watch them, Eddie?

  91. chas says:

    1879s Burlesque dancer, Big Fannie Annie

  92. Gööner In Exile says:

    Micky Silver gives access to tickets 2 months before game, red membership 1 month, you have to wait to be promoted apparently.

    Although I’m considering buying a couple of cannon memberships (17-19) which will automatically become adult silver memberships in couple of years.

  93. chas says:

    I’m now at the gym so can’t do anything re posts.

  94. mickydidit89 says:

    Well, I think the season is reaching fever pitch levels of excitement.

    Guess I’m alone on that one. Must lack mates, a life or not enough hobbies 🙂

    Ok, coffee and then back out into the unexpected sunshine.

    Back for KO

  95. chas says:

    New Post

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