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Played
September 14, 2013 3:00 PM BST
Stadium of Light — Sunderland
Referee:‬ M. Atkinson‎
Attendance:‬ 39055‎
 
48′ (PG) Craig Gardner
 
Aaron Ramsey 67′
 
Aaron Ramsey 76′
   
 
 

Player Ratings: Sunderland 1-3 Arsenal

Aaron Ramsey's second-half double helped the Gunners overcome a stern test on Wearside as Mesut Ozil sparkled on his debut

By Tom Marshall-Bailey at the Stadium of Light

  • Keiren Westwood
    39
    8
    3.00

    Keiren Westwood

    Had no chance with any of the goals but was otherwise fairly reliable. Commanded his area well and seemed assured between the sticks.

  • Ondřej Čelůstka
    7
    19
    2.50

    Ondřej Čelůstka

    Constantly caught upfield as Arsenal targeted the wings as an area of weakness in the Black Cats' defence. Ozil profited from him sleeping when he ought to have been tracking his man for the opening goal.

  • Modibo Diakite
    31
    8
    3.00

    Modibo Diakite

    Relished the battle with Giroud and gave as good as he got in the air. Came close to netting too, striking the crossbar with a well-timed header.

  • Valentin Roberge
    3
    15
    2.50

    Valentin Roberge

    Another weak link in the back four, the new signing struggled to get to grips with the interchanging of positions in the Gunners' four-pronged attack.

  • Adam Johnson
    33
    10
    3.00

    Adam Johnson

    Tried his best as stand-in captain but never really got the beating of Gibbs. Helped out Celustka when the contest became stretched. Won the penalty that got his side back into the game after a jinking run.

  • Jack Colback
    4
    19
    2.50

    Jack Colback

    Could not handle the sheer pace of Walcott and was caught treading water on numerous occasions as the visitors looked to attack his flank at every opportunity.

  • David Vaughan
    5
    16
    2.50

    David Vaughan

    Overrun in midfield by the likes of Ozil and Wilshere but stuck to his task manfully during the opening period. Was sacrificed at the break for goalscorer Gardner.

  • Charalampos Mavrias
    11
    16
    2.00

    Charalampos Mavrias

    Couldn't get into the game whatsoever. Looked to struggle with the intensity of the encounter which may be due to a lack of match fitness, as much as anything. Rarely offered the sort of offensive threat his side required on the wing.

  • Sung-Yong Ki
    23
    44
    2.00

    Sung-Yong Ki Flop of the Match

    Anonymous throughout, the South Korean midfielder looked lost in the middle of the park. Poor opening display for his new club.

  • Steven Fletcher
    22
    17
    3.50

    Steven Fletcher

    Was excellent for the hosts, held the ball up exceptionally and brought others into play to give his side the rest they deserved after spending the majority of time chasing the ball.

  • Jozy Altidore
    59
    9
    3.50

    Jozy Altidore

    Proved a handful for the visitors' defence as he made runs into the channel and shielded the ball well as Di Canio's men looked to defend from the front. Was unlucky to see his strike chalked off after muscling his way through in the second half.

Substitutions

  • Craig Gardner
    30
    10
    3.00

    Craig Gardner

    Was introduced at the interval and tucked away the penalty - his first task after arriving on the field - expertly. Otherwise, his only notable contribution was to go into the referee's notebook for hauling down the magnificent Ozil.

  • Connor Wickham
    6
    18
    2.50

    Connor Wickham

    Had very little impact during his spell on the pitch as the Black Cats went all out for a route back into the game but did test Szczesny with a low strike.

  • Fabio Borini
    27
    19
    2.50

    Fabio Borini

    Could not get involved as much as he would have liked when he entered the fray in the second half, as Di Canio went in search of goals.

  • Wojciech Szczesny
    175
    26
    3.00

    Wojciech Szczesny

    Was effectively deployed as a sweeper as he dictated the Gunners' rhythm in possession from his own 18-yard box. In terms of goalkeeping, a solid display with a good stop from Altidore's drive in particular. Had no chance with the penalty.

  • Bacary Sagna
    164
    28
    3.00

    Bacary Sagna

    A rock at the heart of defence for Arsenal as he stood in for the ill Per Mertesacker with the minimum of fuss. Was dominant in the air and quick across the ground too. Was fortunate to avoid conceding after Altidore brushed past him after the break.

  • Laurent Koscielny
    111
    94
    2.50

    Laurent Koscielny

    Was as dependable as ever in the first half, always first to any long ball and his passing into midfield was crisp. But his contribution to this match will be defined on a stupid lunge on Johnson which helped see the Black Cats draw level.

  • Carl Jenkinson
    155
    32
    3.00

    Carl Jenkinson

    Recovered from an early setback to provide a typically combative display down the right. Helped Walcott double up on the struggling Colback to devastating effect at times, including his cross for Ramsey's first goal of the afternoon.

  • Kieran Gibbs
    182
    14
    3.00

    Kieran Gibbs

    Looked slightly inhibited at first but slowly grew into the game. His controlled ball over the top led to the opening goal. Was caught out badly for the equaliser.

  • Jack Wilshere
    280
    25
    3.50

    Jack Wilshere

    The subject of fierce criticism after a poor performance for England in midweek, the Gunners' prized prodigy appeared fired up from the minute go. His passing was excellent, as were his energetic runs from deep. Started out on the left but drifted everywhere to bamboozle the Sunderland defence.

  • Mesut Özil
    871
    31
    4.50

    Mesut Özil Top of the Match

    A truly magnificent debut from the Gunners' record buy, he was a joy to watch. His passing, clever flicks and constant movement tormented the Black Cats back line, who could only stand and observe the diminutive schemer's artistry at work. Understandably grew tired as the game wore on.

  • Aaron Ramsey
    570
    19
    4.50

    Aaron Ramsey

    Kept his team ticking in midfield with intelligent passing, a high work rate and a determination to help out defensively. The club's star man so far this season sparkled again. Deserved his goals; dispatching both superbly in another wonderful display.

  • Mathieu Flamini
    235
    26
    3.00

    Mathieu Flamini

    Provided a wise head at the base of his side's midfield, allowing the creative triumvirate of Wilshere, Ramsey and Ozil to pull the strings further upfield. Put himself about as he constantly strived to win back possession. Was booked in the second half for trying too hard, however.

  • Olivier Giroud
    338
    11
    3.50

    Olivier Giroud

    Took his goal with aplomb and led the line well, but sometimes was guilty of over-complicating in the final third with his passing and first touches sometimes off. To his credit, he created the third goal with a lovely round-the-corner pass.

  • Theo Walcott
    94
    213
    2.50

    Theo Walcott

    Missed a series of first-half chances that would have put the game to bed from an early stage. His speed was too much for Colback to handle but needs to improve his end product on this evidence.

Substitutions

  • Thomas Vermaelen
    171
    7
    3.00

    Thomas Vermaelen

    Came on in the closing exchanges to help shore up the numbers in his side's defensive unit and was reliable enough as the stand-in left-back.

  • Monreal
    120
    13
    2.50

    Monreal

    Had no time to make an impact on the game.

Results
 
Player Ratings
Tournament
Position
Ranking
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
30 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Manchester City
18 6
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
16 0
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man Utd.
15 2