Hull City vs Arsenal: Player Ratings – Sanchez Delivers Once Again

The Gunners travelled to the KC stadium knowing they had to match Manchester City’s result to have any chance of finishing second this season. That is exactly what they did. The 1-3 scoreline at the end was a body blow to Hull’s survival hopes, but a clear depiction of the bridge in quality at the two ends of the table. Arsenal were at it right from the beginning with Ramsey, Sanchez and Ozil tearing the defence apart with some exquisite one touch football. A brace from Alexis Sanchez and a goal from Aaron Ramsey, who also assisted Sanchez’s second, announced the return of the two midfielders to their best.

Hull City scored a controversial goal in the second half. Laurent Koscielny was fouled near the half line but all Arsenal appeals were overruled as El Mohamady picked up the ball and found Stephen Quinn in the box, who headed it past Ospina. The failure to keep a cleansheet was the only chink in an otherwise dominant Arsenal performance. We look at how the players performed individually.

Player Ratings

  1. David Ospina – 7.5/10

The Colombian did not have much to do in the night but displayed great command in the box when he needed to deal with aerial balls. In the first half, his bravado even took Coquelin out as the defensive midfielder found himself on the wrong end of an Ospina punch. Ospina though had absolutely no chance at stopping Stephen Quinn’s header in the second half. Not at fault for the goal conceded.

  1. Nacho Monreal – 7.5/10

Monreal was assigned to stop the threat of El Mohamady on the left side. The defender was successful in doing his job the entire game. Even though El Mohamady assisted the goal, he looked like the worst player on the pitch because Monreal kept his runs in check.

  1. Per Mertesacker – 6/10

The German center back had a relatively relaxed day at work. He was instrumental in keeping out a chance early on in the game, clearing a header from the 6-yard box. If Mertesacker failed to deal with that obvious goal-scoring chance, the game would have run a different course. It was his mistake though that lead to the goal after he was slow to check the Stephen Quinn’s run behind him, allowing a free header on Ospina’s goal.

  1. Laurent Koscielny – 7/10

The center back proved solid at the back yet again. A dominant presence in the air and an eye for tackles, Koscielny had an easy night’s work but did not allow himself any complacency. He was efficient throughout the game and should have been awarded a free kick for the foul which led to Hull City’s only goal of the tie.

  1. Hector Bellerin – 8/10

The right back has been the stand out performer in the back for Arsene Wenger this season and  he outperformed the other defenders again. His pace and overlapping runs were the source of many clear cut chances. Bellerin was successful at penetration and short passes in the box too, both excellent qualities in a full back.

  1. Francis Coquelin – 8/10

Coquelin has been the first choice defensive midfielder after the demotion of an underperforming Flamini. Coquelin did his job superbly at the KC Stadium. He was responsible for thwarting many Hull attacks and cleverly played the ball out wide to start the counter attack. Even though he was punched in the head early in the game by Ospina, he looked mentally sound.

  1. Santi Cazorla – 8/10

The Spaniard started in a deep defensive midfield role along side Coquelin but did what he does best – create goal scoring chances. His pass set up Aaron Ramsey for Arsenal’s second goal. It is hard to keep Cazorla quiet and he more often than not found himself at the center of the attack.

  1. Mesut Ozil – 7/10

The German midfielder was not directly involved in any of the goals but exhibited some world class quality with some touches and passes which made fans gasp. He was key to the quick build play and set up Ramsey and Ozil who then carried the ball ahead.

  1. Aaron Ramsey – 8.5/10

Ramsey has been in exceptional form since his return to regular first team action. He was at it again scoring a goal and setting up Sanchez’s second. But it looked like the Welshman’s game would be cut short after a horrible tackle by Tom Huddlestone but Ramsey picked himself up, dusted himself off and continued playing in top gear. This is Aaron Ramsey we last witnessed at the beginning of the previous season

  1. Alexis Sanchez – 8.5/10

He was Arsenal best player for a big part of this season and seems to have regained his lost form after a brief lull in performances. He won the free kick which he subsequently scored for Arsenal’s opener. Sanchez had a few chances in the night, which tested Harper before he superbly ran through the defence to meet Aaron Ramsey’s ball and score his second of the night. If Sanchez continues to perform at his peak, Arsenal will finish runners up at the end of the season.

  1. Olivier Giroud – 6.5/10

In a game which was defined by Arsenal’s free-flowing attack, Giroud was surprisingly absent on the scoresheet. Unlike usual games, where he is the target man, Giroud kept menacing the Hull defence getting defenders out of position and holding the ball before playing it off for Ramsey and Sanchez.

  1. Jack Wilshere – 6/10

Wilshere came on for Aaron Ramsey in the 68th minute. Fans were mixed in reacting to the substitution as Ramsey was having a stellar game. Wilshere played after 5 months on the sidelines due to injury. He came on and immediately threatened the Hull defence with his pace, earning a freekick and creating chances. Considering the time away from the game, Wilshere had a good last few minutes of play.

  1. Theo Walcott – 5.5/10

Walcott was sent in place of Olivier Giroud for the last 5 minutes. Though the English striker did not have time to prove himself, he did not put in a performance which would have given Giroud a run for his money.

Written by Dinesh V

Co-founder of Soccersouls. Living a start-up life 24/7
Follow @dineshintwit

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