Marseille 1 Arsenal 2: Player ratings as Aaron Ramsey sparkles

Marseille 1 Arsenal 2: Player ratings as Aaron Ramsey inspires the Gunners to victory despite a late penalty scare

By Guy Clarke
Marseille
1
Arsenal
2

Marseille

Steve Mandanda Not at fault for either of the two Arsenal goals and had little else to do other than pick the ball of out his net. 6/10

Rod Fanni With no orthodox wide man for Arsenal Fanni was able to frequently get forward and cause problems, almost scoring himself with a volley which went past Szczesny’s far post just after the break. 7

Nicolas N’Koulou Dealt with the in-form Olivier Giroud well, but his deflection on Aaron Ramsey’s shot late on prevented Mandanda from stopping the effort as the visitors won by the odd goal. 6

Lucas Mendes With N’Koulou stopped Giroud from having any telling contribution, but may feel he could have offered more of threat going forward with the amount of set-pieces the French side had. 6

Jeremy Morel Looked as though he could be got at by Arsenal and so proved the case as his appalling defensive header gave Walcott the chance to give Arsenal the lead although the hosts had been on top. 5

Alaixys Romao Alongside Imbula at the base of the Marseille midfield Romao gave the more creative side of the midfield the chance to play stopping the visitors from dominating the match. 6

Gianelli Imbula As well as sitting next to Romao in the heart of the midfield the 20-year-old looked to break on the attack and support attacks with his powerful runs through the middle of the pitch, replaced by Thauvin with 10 minutes remaining. 7

Dimitri Payet Lively display from the former Lille man, who along with Andre Ayew kept switching flanks to prevent either of Arsenal’s full-backs from marking him out of the match almost delivered a telling ball as Mertesacker lobbed Szczesny before Gibbs cleared. 6

Mathieu Valbuena Marseille’s midfield maestro ran proceedings for large parts as the hosts controlled the game but struggled to make their dominance pay. 7

Andre Ayew Had a great chance to open the scoring with a free header from a Dimitri Payet cross after 20 minutes but was unable to hit the target, won the penalty late on as Marseille claimed a consolation. 6

André-Pierre Gignac Caused Mertesacker and Koscielny problems throughtout the first half, but when chances arose was unable to covert, struggled to assert himself in the second period. 5

Substitutes:

Jordan Ayew Struggled to assert himself on the match, but was able to grab a consolation goal from the spot after brother Andre was fouled by Ramsey. 6

Florian Thauvin The highly-rated youngster like the rest of the hosts’ attack was unable to deliver any telling contribution, but with only ten minutes may have needed longer to prove his talent. 5

Saber Khalifa N/A

Arsenal

Wojciech Szczesny Looked erratic at times with his handling and a defensive mix-up with Mertesacker almost gave the hosts the lead before Gibbs spared Arsenal’s blushes. 6

Bacary Sagna Solid display from the French full-back, who supported Walcott well and also stopped potentially tricky opponents in Ayew and Payet from influencing proceedings. 7

Per Mertesacker His rash swing of his right boot was an uncharacteristic error which fortunately didn’t result in a goal for the French opponents but regained his composure well. 6

Laurent Koscielny Good display from the quick-thinking centre-half as Gignac was kept quiet with Marseille looking to their striker for a goal. 7

Kieran Gibbs His clearance prevented Arsenal going behind as Marseille were on top. Also dealt with the advancing Fanni well and somehow managed to get forward and offer a threat too. 7

Mathieu Flamini Struggled to keep up with Valbuena at times, but helped out defensively when needed giving the visitors the steel in the midfield they needed in this important opening group game. Made way for Miyaichi prior to the final whistle. 7

Aaron Ramsey Man of the Match display yet again from the Welshman. Typically covered every blade of grass, got his goal but conceded a penalty late on, although replays did show he got a foot to the ball. 8

Theo Walcott Looked impressive early on but then drifted out of the game before capitalising on Morel’s error to give Wenger’s men the lead as they grew into the match. Replaced by Monreal with 10 minutes left to play. 7

Jack Wilshere Switched from the left to centre frequently along with Ozil, caused Marseille problems going forward and helped out Gibbs when possible to deal with Fanni. 7

Mesut Ozil Unable to affect the result of the match as he did on debut at Sunderland on Saturday but the German did show his passing ability, keeping Arsenal in possession whilst offering a threat when given the chance. 6

Olivier Giroud Failed to add to his tally of goals so far this season and struggled to get a foothold on the match. Will feel he should have converted a free header from a Walcott cross after Arsenal had taken the lead. 6

Substitutes:

Nacho Monreal Looked threatening on the left wing after replacing Walcott, offered an outlet that Arsenal utilised. 6

Ryo Miyaichi N/A

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