After a catastrophic starting 20 minutes especially by Partey (once more!), we slowly grew into the game and Laca’s wonderful goal switched the game momentum. After that goal, there was really only one team on the pitch and soon, Odegaard would score his 3rd goal in 3 EPL games and Gabriel would go on to score a third goal with his trademark header…Saka and Martinelli would hit the post and despite a rebellion from Southampton, we would hold on to a clean sheet courtesy of a wonder Ramsdale!
Ramsdale kept us in the game with a multitude of saves in the opening 20 minutes and then he also made tons of saves in the second half. We conceded so many chances and as one of the bloggers was saying, against a better team, we would have conceded at least 3 goals…Southampton was cutting through our midfield and defense like butter even in the second half at times.
Partey was again average at best and mostly worrying with and without the ball. Xhaka needs game time.
Here are the grades:
Ramsdale – 8.5 – MOTM, another fine performance
Tomy – 7 – Resilient but also beaten on his wing a few times by Redmond
White – 7 – Needs to work on his positioning
Gabs – 7.5 – A goal and some good defending.
Tierney – 7.5 – A positive outing capped with another assist but was also struggling at times.
Partey – 4.5. Still struggling despite getting game time. Worrying.
Xhaka – 5. Trying but need rhythm.
Saka – 8 – A great day out for him. Positive play, an assist, plenty of dribbles. What a player!
Odegaard – 7.5 – A good goal, some chances but need to impact the game even more…
Martinelli – 7.5 – A good display and unlucky to finish without a goal or an assist.
Laca – 7.5 – A great goal, good link-up play but if faster could have gotten another goal. Good defensive contribution.
Arteta – 5.5. – He must have lots of faith in Xhaka-Partey and not much in Lokonga – strange…Similarly, Pepe is not even coming on these days – something must be up. Arteta did great in sanctioning Auba if he committed a disciplinary breach and was good in the post-match press conference too.