Arsenal picked up a morale-boosting 3-2 win over Liverpool to jump to the top of the Premier League on Sunday evening.

Arsenal returned to the top of the Premier League table with a thrilling victory over Liverpool thanks to goals from Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka. This came after Manchester City had taken over the summit following their win over Southampton.

The hosts took the lead just a minute into the game through an exceptional counter-attack after Liverpool handed them the ball in their own half. A neat interchange between Martinelli and Martin Odegaard resulted in the Brazilian getting a clear-cut opportunity to put the ball into the Liverpool net.

The Arsenal winger did not disappoint and managed to beat Alisson Becker with a carefully placed finish. Liverpool improved as the game went on, and the Reds pegged the home side back through Darwin Nunez.

However, it was Arsenal who took the initiative once again and went into the break with a well-deserved lead. A disappointing defensive display from Jordan Henderson and Trent Alexander-Arnold allowed Martinelli to set up a tap-in for Saka right at the stroke of half-time.

While both teams huffed and puffed in the second half in search of a winner, it was Arsenal who managed to win a penalty late on in the second half. And Saka converted from the spot to secure all three points for his side. Here at The Hard Tackle, we look at how both sets of players fared on the night.

Arsenal

Aaron Ramsdale: 6/10

Liverpool did not test the Arsenal goalkeeper too often, and he did reasonably well with his catching and distribution. Ramsdale had a heart-in-his-mouth moment when he was late to release the ball while being pressed by Darwin Nunez.

Takehiro Tomiyasu: 8/10

The Japanese defender was deployed as the left-back and he was exceptional for Arsenal. He managed to keep Mohamed Salah in check throughout the game and produced a number of vital interceptions.

Ben White: 6/10

The Arsenal right-back had a tough start to the game, with Luis Diaz taking him on at every given opportunity. However, the Colombian went off with an injury, and White managed to play his natural game with freedom. He looked solid defensively after Diaz’s departure and almost created a goal for Granit Xhaka with a well-drilled cross.

William Saliba: 7/10

The French youngster continues to impress on a weekly basis. Saliba was undoubtedly the best centre-back on the pitch today and dealt with the threat of Diogo Jota and Nunez quite efficiently.

Gabriel Magalhaes: 5/10

The Brazilian had a few nervy moments throughout the game and will have to improve his concentration levels against top-class opposition.

Thomas Partey: 7/10

The physically imposing midfielder had an excellent outing against Liverpool. He was robust with his tackling and read the game well. Partey managed to break up numerous Liverpool attacks and did well to shield the back four.

Granit Xhaka: 7.5/10

The Swiss international has found a new lease of life and seems to be operating in a much more advanced role. Xhaka kept charging towards the Liverpool box time and again and had the opportunity to put the ball in the net as well.

Martin Odegaard: 8/10

The Norwegian midfielder was Arsenal’s prime creative outlet. He kept finding pockets of space in between the Liverpool centre-backs and full-backs. Odegaard managed to set up the game’s opening goal for Martinelli and came off to a standing ovation.

Bukayo Saka: 9/10

The youngster is enjoying a purple patch right now, and he caused all sorts of problems for Liverpool with his movement and positioning. Saka scored twice to put his side in the lead both times.

Gabriel Martinelli: 9/10

The Brazilian was our player to watch out for before the game, and he certainly lived up to the expectations. Martinelli wreaked havoc down the left flank and was a nightmare for Trent Alexander-Arnold. Martinelli also scored the opening goal of the game and played a key role in creating Saka’s first. Undoubtedly the best player on the pitch.

SUBSTITUTES

Kieran Tierney: N/A

Came on too late to make any meaningful impact.

Fabio Vieira: N/A

Came on too late to make any meaningful impact.

Eddie Nketiah: N/A

Came on too late to make any meaningful impact.

Liverpool

Alisson Becker: 6/10

The Liverpool goalkeeper could have done nothing to prevent the three goals he conceded to Arsenal. Alisson did well to stand up to the challenge when called upon, but his teammate let him down.

Trent Alexander-Arnold: 0/10

Another shocking defensive display from the England international, who has been rightly questioned for his form this season. Alexander-Arnold failed to read the run of Martinelli for the opening goal, and his reluctance to tackle the Brazilian allowed Arsenal to create the games’s second goal.

Joel Matip: 5/10

The experienced Liverpool defender did not impress against Arsenal either. However, he was still a cut above the likes of Alexander-Arnold. With the midfield failing to control the tempo and shield the back four, Matip was exposed against the Arsenal attackers, and there was very little he could have done to stop them.

Virgil van Dijk: 5/10

The Dutchman was left brutally exposed just like his central defensive partner Joel Matip.

Kostas Tsimikas: 4/10

The Greek international earned a start because of Andrew Robertson’s injury, but he failed to make an impact. Tsimikas inflicted unnecessary fouls on Saka time and again and was largely ineffective with his deliveries in the final third. He did produce an impressive goal-line clearance, though.

Thiago Alcantara: 6.5/10

The Spaniard tried his best to control proceedings in the middle of the park and was one of the few players who can come away with his head held high.

Jordan Henderson: 0/10

An abysmal performance from the Liverpool captain against Arsenal. Henderson was expected to anchor the midfield for the side. Instead, he kept giving the ball away and played it safe more often than not. It was his (and Alexander-Arnold’s) poor defending that allowed Martinelli to set up Saka’s opening goal of the game.

Mohamed Salah: 4/10

Another dreadful outing from the Egyptian international. Salah has struggled to score goals this season, and Tomiyasu completely marked him out of the game.

Luis Diaz: 7/10

The Colombian international was Liverpool’s best player on the pitch before his injury, and he managed to create their opening goal of the game. Diaz caused all sorts of problems for Ben White with his flair and pace.

Diogo Jota: 6/10

The Portuguese international worked hard alongside Nunez and created Liverpool’s second goal. Jota had to operate as a left-sided winger after the injury to Diaz and managed to do his job reasonably well.

Darwin Nunez: 7/10

The Uruguayan striker was impressive in the first half and claimed the reward for his efforts as well. He managed to score the equaliser for Liverpool but drifted in and out of the game in the second half due to the lack of service from his teammates.

SUBSTITUTES

Roberto Firmino: 7/10

Klopp brought on the Brazilian as an alternative to the injured Diaz, and he continued in his rich vein of form. Firmino had scored a brace against Brighton in the last league game, and he chipped in with another goal against Arsenal in the second half.

Joe Gomez: 6.5/10

The Liverpool centre-back was brought on as a replacement for Alexander-Arnold. Gomez looked strong and tenacious, and Liverpool certainly improved with him on the pitch.

Ibrahima Konate: 5/10

Liverpool were all over the place as a team when the Frenchman came on, and he had little to do.

Fabinho: 5/10

Fabinho came on to sort things out in the midfield and help the team improve defensively. He had a negligible impact.

Harvey Elliott: 4/10

Klopp brought on Elliott to add some creativity in the final third and help set up Liverpool’s equaliser. However, the youngster barely had any impact on the game.

Comments 1

  1. Gladwin Kavon Trott says:

    until we adress TAA N SALAH THEY should not be starting let alone in 16 they r horrible that is putting it nicely

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