Football

Arsenal player ratings: Bernd Leno plays vital role in Greece as Bukayo Saka shines again



A goal from Alexandre Lacazette saw Arsenal secure a narrow 1-0 lead over Olympiacos in the first leg of their Europa League last 32 clash.

James Olley was in Greece to run the rule over Mikel Arteta’s side. 

Bernd Leno: 8

Justified Arteta’s decision to recall him for this competition with a few smart saves, most notably stopping David Luiz scoring an own goal.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos: 7

Not a natural right-back but performed well in defence and hit the crossbar with a late header. 

(AFP via Getty Images)

David Luiz: 7

Nearly diverted Giorgos Masouras’ first-half cross into his own net almost scored an own goal midway through the first half.


(AFP via Getty Images)

Shkodran Mustafi: 7

Looked reasonably solid until scything down Youssef El Arabi 20 minutes from time, picking up a yellow card in the process.

Bukayo Saka: 7

Wasn’t always rewarded for some intelligent runs but still able to create the winning goal, producing a pinpoint cross for Lacazette to score.

(AFP via Getty Images)

Matteo Guendouzi: 6

Looked to get on the ball and make things happen but wasn’t able to dictate play as we’ve seen previously.

Granit Xhaka: 6

Provided a calming if uninspiring presence in central midfield.

(Getty Images)

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: 7

Produced several dangerous crosses from the right in the first half before later switching flanks to accommodate Pepe.

Joe Willock: 5

Showed plenty of willingness to press but not always effective in possession and struggled when shunted out to the left after Ceballos came on. Substituted late on.

Gabriel Martinelli: 5

Showed good awareness in the box to set Lacazette for his 20th minute chance but otherwise a quiet evening ended before the hour mark.

(AFP via Getty Images)

Alexandre Lacazette: 7

Missed Arsenal’s best chance of the first half and lacked conviction throughout but was in the right place and the right time to score a precious away goal.

Substitutes

Dani Ceballos: 5

Replaced Martinelli for the final 32 minutes. Had a tame shot from the edge of the box saved but didn’t meaningfully affect the game.

Nicolas Pepe: 5

Came on for Willock with 15 minutes remaining but made little impression.


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