Arsene Wenger welcomed Burnley to the Emirates this weekend. It was the French manager’s last ever home match for the Gunners. Before the game kicked off, Sean Dyche’s team were assured a place in European football for the first time in 51 years. With Arsenal crashing out of Europa League following an aggregate 1-2 loss to Atletico Madrid on Thursday night, the Gunners will join The Clarets in Europa League next season too.
Arsenal Players’ Ratings Against Burnley
Arsenal were without Laurent Koscielny. He missed out due to an Achilles injury during the Europa League clash. As a result of the injury, the French defender will also miss the upcoming World Cup. Meanwhile, Konstantinos Mavropanos, who had impressed last weekend, retained his position in the starting eleven.
The visitors named a strong starting line-up, with Nick Pope and Jóhann Berg Gudmundsson both starting at the Emirates. Last year at Turf Moor, a penalty from Alexis Sanchez in the last minute aided the Gunners to a marginal victory. Both teams were separated by just three points but Arsenal has a game in hand.
Aubameyang opened the scoring for Arsenal with the players eager to have a great send-off for their manager. The Gabonese forward scored Arsenal’s fifth and final Premier League goal at home this season. The Gunners squandered quite a few chances and were unable to break into their opponent’s penalty box after their opener. Burnley came close to equalizing in the 44th minute, but Alexandre Lacazette increased the lead during stoppage time of the first half. After the break, Sead Kolasinac and Alex Iwobi added goals and the mood in the stadium was lifted.
Petr Cech: 7
Arsenal’s first-choice keeper had a relatively easy time between the posts. There was little to do as Arsenal dominated possession and refused to let the Clarets attack much.
Hector Bellerin: 7.5
It was a positive display from Bellerin after their upsetting loss to Atletico Madrid on Thursday. The right-back had many more chances to advance forward in this match. His understanding with Iwobi and Lacazette seems to be improving and he provided good link-up plays for his team-mates.
Calum Chambers: 7
He stepped up from the backline very often and tried the get the ball moving forward. Chambers partnered Mavropanos for the second consecutive time in Premier League this season. Their partnership is seemingly effective, with the duo aware of who stays at the back when the team advances to attack.
Konstantinos Mavropanos: 7
The Greek defender shows that his great physical strength and ability to handle aerial duals well. At just 20 years of age, there is plenty of hope that he will be one of the best defenders in the world. There were some minor mistakes in his play today, but that is all part and parcel of his learning process. If he continues improving and calm in his play, he can be a great replacement for Arsenal’s senior defenders.
Sead Kolasinac: 7
The strong left-back made a rare start in Premier League as Nacho Monreal was left on the bench. He looked calm when dealing with the pressure exerted by Burnley players and had plenty of opportunities to get forward. Following a wonderful assist from Wilshere, Kolasinac scored Arsenal’s third goal of the day.
Granit Xhaka: 7.5
Xhaka was lucky to have not come off worse during the collision with Ashley Barnes in the 21st minute of the match. Once again, his superb passing has allowed him to find his team-mates easily and play the game at a quicker pace.
Jack Wilshere: 7
This match was Wilshere’s 150th start for Arsenal. The midfielder seemed to have some miscommunication with Iwobi in the earlier parts of the match as they overlapped each other’s playing area. In the second half, Wilshere became more pro-active and direct with his runs. He provided a superb assist for his fellow left-back in the latter half of the match.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan: 7.5
The Armenian had a good vision for passes. Even though his key passes were at times blocked, his creativity is as good as Mesut Ozil’s. As compared to the German midfielder, who was absent from the game, Mkhitaryan is the one who is much more active on the pitch and running all around.
Alex Iwobi: 6.5
Iwobi has struggled to play consistently well. After a few good glimpses, he returned to his poor form of having heavy touches and not playing on the same page as his team-mates. That has caused his team to give away possession far too easily. The 22-year-old can afford to do better.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: 8
Aubameyang showed great positional awareness. He got himself in great areas to score and was willing to dig for the ball from deep play. It was great that he scored a crucial early goal for the Gunners.
Alexandre Lacazette: 8.5
Lacazette shows his talent and ability to play well with Aubameyang. The duo seems to understand each other better than expected. With Lacazette’s flicks and key passes, he has created lots of chances for the rest of his team. Since returning from injury, the French striker has started to play with much more confidence in himself and his strengths.
Aaron Ramsey: 7
The Welshman made a few quick and dangerous runs in the final third of the pitch. He attempted a shot from close range, but the ball was kept firmly in Pope’s hands.
Danny Welbeck: 7.5
A strong shot from him could have extended Arsenal’s scoreline to 6-0. Unfortunately for the Englishman, his shot hit the woodwork. The forward looked energetic despite playing a huge role on Thursday in Spain.
Per Mertesacker: 7
Arsenal’s captain came on at the 77th minute of the game. Like Wenger, it was his final home match. The tall centre-back did all that he needed to, but Burnley rarely threatened. It was a great farewell for him and his manager.