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1 vs 0
Played
February 2, 2013 3:00 PM GMT
Emirates Stadium — London
Referee:‬ C. Foy‎
Attendance:‬ 59872‎
 
 
   
 
 

Player Ratings: Arsenal 1-0 Stoke

Lukas Podolski came off the bench to grab three points for the Gunners, with the German's deflected free-kick finally breaching a stubborn and robust Potters' defence

By Ewan Roberts at the Emirates Stadium

  • Wojciech Szczesny
    190
    12
    3.00

    Wojciech Szczesny

    As much a spectator as the fans for most of the match, rarely forced to make a save or leave his line to deal with crosses. Held onto the ball well, and never produced any nervy moments.

  • Bacary Sagna
    176
    15
    3.00

    Bacary Sagna

    Was entirely untroubled defensively, and did not give Etherington a sniff. A solid performance, but he did not get forward with any kind of abandon or overlap beyond Walcott.

  • Per Mertesacker
    239
    9
    3.50

    Per Mertesacker

    The tall German matched up against Crouch, and was regularly forced to battle the lanky Potters' forward in the air. Had mixed success against the 32-year-old, but was commanding at set-pieces.

  • Laurent Koscielny
    195
    15
    3.00

    Laurent Koscielny

    Largely let Mertesacker deal with Crouch, and instead chased second balls. Was a threat at the other end, and was unlucky not to score with a powerful header in the first half. Used the ball well.

  • Monreal
    432
    14
    3.50

    Monreal

    Gave a solid debut performance. Showed great positional sense and defensive intelligence. Competed well against the physicality of Walters, matching the bullish attacker in the air. Improved offensively, provided several delicious crosses.

  • A. Diaby
    139
    55
    2.50

    A. Diaby

    Provided the mettle that supplemented the creative talents around him, but was far too conservative in his use of the ball and rarely surged forward. That reservedness on the ball saw him subbed as Arsenal chased a goal.

  • Mikel Arteta
    179
    21
    3.00

    Mikel Arteta

    An inauspicious return from injury for Arteta, who looked a little off the pace, especially in the face of Stoke's aggressive, combative midfield. Displayed usual levels of composure and ball retention.

  • Jack Wilshere
    269
    17
    3.50

    Jack Wilshere

    Lined up in the hole, playing just behind Giroud, and conducted Arsenal's attack showing great vision. Played an utterly delightful through-ball for Oxlade-Chamberlain that should have been converted.

  • Olivier Giroud
    198
    28
    2.50

    Olivier Giroud

    Battled well against Shawcross and Huth, winning his fair share of headers against the robust duo, but did not have much of a sniff in front of goal. Worked hard though.

  • Theo Walcott
    206
    25
    3.00

    Theo Walcott

    Had the beating of Wilkinson from the first whistle, accelerating past the right-back with ease, but his end product was a source of frustration. Won the free-kick from which Arsenal scored.

  • Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
    162
    37
    2.50

    Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

    Looked lively but was let down by wayward finishing. Should have given his side a first-half lead but directed his half-volley straight at Begovic. Saw a curling effort later palmed behind by the Bosnian too. Subbed with 20 minutes remaining.

Substitutions

  • Aaron Ramsey
    121
    37

    Aaron Ramsey

    Came on in added time.

  • Santi Cazorla
    221
    11
    3.00

    Santi Cazorla

    Replaced Diaby with 20 minutes left to play. Linked play well and should have doubled Arsenal's lead but blasted over the bar.

  • Lukas Podolski
    349
    9
    3.50

    Lukas Podolski

    Came on in place of Oxlade-Chamberlain with 20 minutes remaining and made a huge impact. His fizzing free kick deflected off Cameron and flew into the back of the net.

  • Asmir Begovic
    182
    19
    3.50

    Asmir Begovic Top of the Match

    Looked in invincible form today up until Podolski's deflected free kick flew past him. Had thwarted Arsenal on numerous occasions before then. Made a tremendous, scrambling stop to deny Oxlade-Chamberlain from close-range before stopping the winger's curling effort with the tips of his fingers.

  • Geoff Cameron
    9
    49
    1.50

    Geoff Cameron Flop of the Match

    The American has spent most of his pitch time in defence for the Potters, and looked sluggish and devoid of vision when thrust into a midfield role today. His positioning for the free kick was terrible, breaking apart from the rest of the wall, with Podolski's effort deflecting off him and into the goal.

  • Robert Huth
    36
    30
    3.50

    Robert Huth

    The bandaged German gave a towering performance, making a number of crucial headers and blocks - the best of which was a headed clearance from under his own crossbar.

  • Ryan Shawcross
    12
    88
    3.00

    Ryan Shawcross

    Routinely booed by the home crowd, but the Stoke was a calm, measured presence in the Potters' defence. Coped well with the movement of Arsenal's attack and, as you would expect, was dominant in the air.

  • Andy Wilkinson
    12
    46
    2.00

    Andy Wilkinson

    Was utterly incapable of containing the pace and directness of Walcott in the first half, though improved as the game wore on. Conceded several sloppy free kicks in dangerous areas, one of which resulted in the goal.

  • Ryan Shotton
    4
    45
    2.50

    Ryan Shotton

    Struggled to thwart the inward movement of Oxlade-Chamberlain, who proved too elusive for Shotton when he darted infield.

  • Glenn Whelan
    5
    41
    2.50

    Glenn Whelan

    As hard-working and tenacious as ever, Whelan was a destructive, combative presence in midfield. But his passing was frequently poor and offered little forward impetus on the ball.

  • Steven N'Zonzi
    10
    37
    3.00

    Steven N'Zonzi

    Brought energy and tenacity to the Stoke midfield, but was largely ineffective on the ball. Harrassed and harried Arsenal and was a general nuisance in the middle third. Pressed well.

  • Matthew Etherington
    3
    41
    2.00

    Matthew Etherington

    Provided little in the way of an out-ball and gave Wilkinson little assistance against the pace of Walcott. Put his side under pressure with lacklustre clearances and poor touches.

  • Jonathan Walters
    6
    42
    2.00

    Jonathan Walters

    Offered nothing offensively and gave Monreal a very easy start to life in England. Never beat his man, rarely hit the by-line and brought no creativity down the flank. Worked reasonably hard.

  • Peter Crouch
    15
    41
    3.00

    Peter Crouch

    Made a nuisance of himself up front, challenging for long balls forward with a large degree of success. A reliable totem around which Stoke's attacks were built.

Substitutions

  • Kenwyne Jones
    14
    32

    Kenwyne Jones

    Replaced Crouch in the final 10 minutes. Received almost no service.

  • Michael Owen
    15
    63

    Michael Owen

    Came on for Cameron with 10 minutes remaining and his only action of note was a scuffle with Arteta.

  • Cameron Jerome
    9
    31

    Cameron Jerome

    Replaced Walters as Stoke pushed for an equaliser.

Results
 
Player Ratings
Tournament
Position
Ranking
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Luis Suárez Luis Suárez
Striker
Liverpool
29 0
Daniel Sturridge Daniel Sturridge
Striker
Liverpool
20 0
Yaya Touré Yaya Touré
Midfielder
Manchester City
18 6
Wayne Rooney Wayne Rooney
Striker
Man Utd.
15 2
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
15 0