Worst and Best Arsenal Players in Premier League Defeat to Aston Villa

On Sunday, Arsenal missed out on the opportunity to claim the top spot in the Premier League, falling 2-0 to Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium.

Mikel Arteta’s team entered the match with high hopes of seizing the lead in the title race, fueled by Liverpool’s loss to Crystal Palace. Yet, a disappointing second half meant it was Manchester City, not Arsenal, who claimed the top spot after the weekend’s fixtures.

Leon Bailey and Ollie Watkins clinched victory for Villa with late second-half goals.

Let’s take a look at Arsenal’s worst and best players in the defeat, according AFCN’s player ratings.

Arsenal’s Worst Player vs Aston Villa

Oleksandr Zinchenko: 4/10

To be frank, there were numerous choices available for the section titled Arsenal’s worst player against Aston Villa in this article.

Gabriel exhibited inconsistency, Gabriel Jesus faced difficulties, Bukayo Saka seemed out of sorts, but Oleksandr Zinchenko had the toughest time.

The left-back position has posed a significant challenge for Arteta recently, and Zinchenko’s performance on Sunday only exacerbated the issue. Particularly in the second half, the former Man City player was disappointing.

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If you’ve been following X since the match ended, you’ve likely come across posts criticising Zinchenko for losing possession in dangerous areas, mishandling simple passes, or, worst of all, being positioned deeper than his defensive teammates without justification.

Zinchenko had a particularly poor performance, to put it mildly.

Arsenal’s Best Player vs Aston Villa

Martin Odegaard: 7/10

Mikel Arteta was immediately questioned about his decision to substitute Martin Odegaard in his post-match interview, indicating the significance of Odegaard’s performance.

During the first half, Odegaard stood out as Arsenal’s best player, driving the team’s positive momentum at the Emirates. He dominated the field, winning all his tackles, five duels, and orchestrating two promising chances for his teammates.

Arsenal supporters may have concerns as Arteta has confirmed that their club captain sustained an injury, resulting in his substitution on Sunday.

Dishonourable mention

Gabriel Jesus: 4/10

Darwin Nunez and Gabriel Jesus exemplify hard-working forwards, actively engaging in every aspect of the game. However, the pivotal difference lies in their roles within their respective teams: Liverpool and Arsenal field them upfront, while Manchester City benefits from the hyper-clinical Erling Haaland. This distinction underscores why neither Arsenal nor Liverpool are likely to clinch the Premier League title this season.

For Arsenal supporters, Sunday’s match showcased Gabriel Jesus’s typical performance. The Brazilian displayed energy and vigor but failed to demonstrate significant prowess in the opponent’s penalty area.

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