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Rating the Arsenal Players Against Bayern Munich

James McNicholasFeatured Columnist IVNovember 7, 2016

Rating the Arsenal Players Against Bayern Munich

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    Arsenal defied expectations to pull off a miraculous victory in Munich. Sadly for the Gunners, it still wasn't enough to see them progress to the quarterfinals of the Champions League.

    Arsenal needed victory by a three-goal margin to ensure progression. Strikes from Olivier Giroud and Laurent Koscielny took them to the edge of glory, but unfortunately, they weren't able to find the third, tie-turning goal.

    Arsenal will be feeling regretful after essentially ending the tie with the dismal first-leg display. However, as they return to their domestic campaign, the Gunners ought to be buoyed by an impressive result on the night.

    Go to the next slide to see how the individual Arsenal players rated.

Defence

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    GK Lukasz Fabianski (8/10)

    On a night of surprises, there was no greater surprise than the performance of Lukasz Fabianski. It was the Pole's first start for Arsenal in more than a year, and he looked like a changed man: solid, dependable and confident.

    Wojciech Szczesny was left out of the game due to the mental toll of his exertions in the Premier League. Fabianski's performance will make Arsene Wenger wonder which of his two Polish goalkeepers to opt for in the crucial clash with Swansea this weekend.


    DR Carl Jenkinson (8/10)

    Carl Jenkinson's storming performance was typified when he raced back against the fleet-footed Arjen Robben to confidently rob the Dutchman of the ball and single-handedly prevent a Bayern Munich goal.

    Jenkinson's performance was one of his best of the season, matching up to his excellent early-season form. Bacary Sagna is due to return soon from injury, but he may find it hard to displace the in-form Englishman.

     

    CB Per Mertesacker (8/10)

    Per Mertesacker looked typically composed at the heart of the Arsenal defence. He is a natural organiser and marshalled Arsenal's most impressive defensive display in months.

    After the nightmare of the first leg, the big German will have been particularly pleased to put in such a competent display in his homeland.

     

    CB Laurent Koscielny (9/10)

    Selected ahead of skipper Thomas Vermaelen, Laurent Koscielny responded with one of his best performances of the season. He was quick into the tackle, aggressive in the air and even scored a fantastic headed goal.

    With Thomas Vermaelen on the sidelines for this game, Koscielny is in the driving seat for the spot alongside Mertesacker. The captain faces a real fight to reclaim his spot.

     

    DL Kieran Gibbs (7/10) 

    Arsenal fans are accustomed to long lay-offs for their injured stars, so it was great to see Kieran Gibbs back in an Arsenal shirt earlier than expected. He immediately looked an assured member of the Arsenal back line, although he wasn't able to influence Arsenal's attacking game as much as he would have liked.

    Gibbs now faces a fascinating battle with Nacho Monreal to occupy the left back slot. On the strength of this performance, Gibbs has to be the front-runner.

Midfield

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    CM Mikel Arteta (7/10)

    Mikel Arteta took the captain's armband and gave a typically dogged, disciplined display. What he lacks in pace he makes up for with sheer will.

    Arteta's performance was marred by some silly fouls in extra time, which prevented Arsenal from gathering any momentum as they sought a crucial third goal.

     

    CM Aaron Ramsey (6/10)

    Aaron Ramsey worked tirelessly in midfield but didn't really have an opportunity to make a significant impact on the game. However, it was noticeable even in this muted display that he performs far better in the centre than when deployed out wide.

    Ramsey's form has picked up significantly in recent weeks, and he'll be hoping to continue that development in his preferred central role.

     

    AM Tomas Rosicky (7/10)

    With Jack Wilshere injured on the sidelines, Tomas Rosicky is set to be a big part of Arsenal's team in the coming weeks. This was an encouraging display from the Czech maestro.

    As ever, his work rate was outstanding for the entire ninety minutes. He will, however, be a little disappointed by his passing game. His radar will need to be adjusted before the Premier League match with Swansea.

     

    Subs

    Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (6/10) 

    The introduction of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain gave the team some much-needed directness in the hectic final stages.

Attack

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    RW Theo Walcott (7/10)

    Even on nights when his touch is a little off, Theo Walcott's sheer pace makes him a constant threat to any defence. And so it was proved when he escaped his marker to square for Giroud's opener.

    The only surprise was that Walcott was withdrawn in the closing stages. Clearly, Arsene Wenger has earmarked him as a key figure in Saturday's clash with Swansea.

     

    CF Olivier Giroud (8/10)

    Olivier Giroud kicked off proceedings with a third-minute goal that put the cat among the proverbial pigeons. It was a simple strike, but an important one for Giroud, who had not scored since the game against Liverpool back in January.

    As ever, the Frenchman worked selflessly for the team and was unlucky that one or two of his lay-offs did not find his teammates.

     

    LW Santi Cazorla (8/10)

    Santi Cazorla doesn't get the ball as frequently when deployed on the left flank, but when he does, he is often in more space than when deployed in a crowded central position.

    Throughout the night, Cazorla looked the man most likely to unpick the Bayern defence. If he had been paired with his partner in creativity, Jack Wilshere, Arsenal might have had even more cause to celebrate their team this evening.

     

    Subs

    Gervinho (7/10)

    In this bizarre match, and it would have been strangely fitting if Gervinho had scored a wonder goal to win it for the Gunners. The Ivorian nearly managed it, but after a perfect pirouette, his shot trickled just wide.

    This was an encouraging display from the winger, who is in dire need of a boost to his ailing confidence.

    What did you make of Arsenal's players against Bayern?  Have your say below.

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