Klopp Stopped: Arsenal 2 – 0 Borussia Dortmund – Report & Player Ratings

Final Score
Arsenal 2 – 0 Dortmund

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After embarassing themselves yet again against Manchester United, Arsenal turned their attention towards the Champions League. They only needed a draw against Dortmund to qualify, but a win was needed for morale purposes.

For once, Arsenal got their goal early.

Cazorla and Sanogo linked up well on the edge of the box, and Sanogo eventually got a chance in front of goal, which he took well. It was a good move, and a good finish.

But Dortmund tightened up after than, and Arsenal sat back a little. Half chances came and went for both sides right up until the half time whistle, but nothing worth writing home about.

“The Chile man made some space outside the area and curled a stunning shot into the bottom corner. Another Alexis Beauty.”

Dortmund looked far better in the second half, and came at Arsenal with a little more conviction. The Gunners held on though.

They held on long enough for Alexis Sanchez to double their lead. Cazorla played a ball into Alexis in the midfield, allowing the Chile man made some space outside the area and curled a stunning shot into the bottom corner. Another Alexis Beauty.

The game got a little quieter after Arsenal’s second, especially once Arteta and Sanogo both went off injured. Again.

“Finally, three points and a genuinely good performance from start to finish.”

Podolski and Flamini replaced them, and although Dortmund were now finding space in front of Arsenal’s centre backs, it was plain sailing right until the final whistle.

Finally, three points and a genuinely good performance from start to finish.

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Arsenal Player Ratings

Martinez: [7/10]

Made two very good saves, one in each half. Comfortable otherwise.

Chambers: [6.5/10]

Defended well when he needed to, and tried to make an impact going forward. Linking up well with Chamberlain now.

Mertesacker: [6/10] 

Put Monreal in a sticky situation twice with some wayward headers, but other than that, he was solid.

Monreal: [6.5/10] 

Again, if you ask me, Nacho is doing a good job for a small left back playing at centre back. Had one weird moment where he stopped playing when the ball was in the box, though.

Gibbs: [6.5/10]

Big improvement on his last performance. Kieran defended well and pushed forward plenty.

Ramsey: [6.5/10]

Not back to his best, but he’s showing signs. Good touches, good runs, and fewer mistakes.

Arteta: [7/10] 

Thought he did really well up until his second half injury. Sat in front of the defence and kept things compact. He was missed when he came off.

Cazorla: [7.5/10] – MOTM

Cazorla’s best performance for a long, long time. Got two assists, the first one being particularly good. He held his own today and made an impact.

The Ox: [7.5/10] 

Ox was extremely unfortunate not to score today. He showed excellent touches, good shooting and a lot of energy. He hit the bar with a beautiful shot in the second period. On form, and looking good.

Sanchez: [7.5/10] 

Another solid performance topped with another stunning goal. He opened up his body and tucked it home from at least twenty yards.

Sanogo: [7/10]

Did very well in the build up to his goal, and finished well. Worked hard, hassled defenders and made good runs. His second half performance wasn’t great though, and he eventually came off with a hamstring injury. Hopefully it’s nothing serious, but knowing our players he’ll be out until 2039.

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Substitutes

Flamini: [5.5/10]
After Flamini replaced Arteta, Dortmund immediately began finding space between the midfield and the defence.

Podolski, Campbell [N/A]

Klopp Stopped:

Arsene managed to stop Jurgen Klopp’s side today, with perhaps Arsenal’s first good game of the season. And I mean that, unfortunately.

Before tonight, Arsenal had only played well in pockets. Fifteen minute intervals strewn out across the season’s fixtures. But tonight, the entire ninety minutes was positive, and Arsenal were always in control. A season first, and hopefully the first of many.

Plus, the win ensured last-sixteen qualification, and that’s obviously a huge boost. It could even play a part in who we sign in January.

We are going to sign somebody in January, right?

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