Category Archives: Match Report

Arsenal vs leeds – tom’s match report

We met Gunnersaurus before the match.

We got to meet Gunnersaurus before the game outside of the Armoury. We also said hello to, Arsenal legend, Bob Wilson in the car park before the match. Finally, before going in, we got to see the Rugby League World Cup trophy. The Emirates will be hosted some of the matches later in the year.

Me and my dad with the Rugby League World Cup trophies

The Line-Up

Today Partey and Tierney will probably miss the end of the season with the long term injuries and I will be glad to see them again next season. I did not expect Martinelli to start over Smith Rowe, I thought Marinelli would come on for Emile Smith Rowe in the second half. Also Ben White is out with an injury, but hopefully he is back next week.

Ramsdale

Soares Holding Gabriel Tomiyasu

Ødegaard Elneny Xhaka

Saka  Nketiah  Martinelli

First Half

Before kick-off the Arsenal fans got to sing our new anthem, ‘The Angel’ by Louis Dunford. It was really good and should happen at every match. This is what is sounded like from where we were.

Within the first two minutes, Arsenal got a free kick from Saka being fouled. Odegaard whipped the ball in across the penalty area slightly missing one or two diving heads. Three minutes later, Arsenal super striker Nketiah pounced on a heavy touch by Illian Meslier, the young Leeds goalkeeper from France, and Eddie knocked the ball into the back of the net.

Ten minutes gone and Nketiah could not wait for more as Martinelli crossed the ball in and Eddie scored, slotting the ball into the bottom right corner.

Half an hour in and Luke Ayling, the Leeds United right back, got sent off for a ferocious tackle on Gabriel Martinelli, who had been only just able to actually keep the ball in play. The ref gave a yellow to begin with, but VAR made him check it. It did take some time, including a yellow card for Raphinha for protesting about the initial foul being a yellow card instead, but eventually he gave the red.

Arsenal did have some other fabulous chances to score, including two corners. Just before half time, Arsenal had another free kick, Meslier got a hand to the ball as Marcos Llorente bicycle kicked off the line, towards the corner flag.

At Half Time

At half time, the Arsenal 1971 double winning team came out. Players like Charlie George, George Graham, Frank McLintock and Bob Wilson all came out to applause from the crowd. My Grandad was jealous.

The legends of ’71 came out at half time

Second Half

In the 2nd half, Arsenal still had most of the ball but the Leeds fans were really helping to support their team. Leeds could have been able to catch Arsenal on the counter attack. During the first ten to twenty minutes of the second half Arsenal had six corners, four consecutive, two afterwards.

Sixty-six minutes in, Leeds had their 1st corner, whipped into the back post. Llorente slides downward tucks the ball under Aaron Ramsdale to score. Completely against the run of play. Arsenal were a bit nervy at times after that with Leeds on the attack. Ramsdale had to make some amazing saves to keep Arsenal ahead. Arsenal did have some more attempts though.

Player Ratings

My Man of the Match was Eddie Nketiah because of his cheekiness to sneak up on Meslier to score his first goal and class to score his second.

Ramsdale – 7

Soares 5 Holding – 7 Gabriel – 7 Tomiyasu – 8

Ødegaard – 8 Elneny – 8 Xhaka – 7

Saka – 8  Nketiah – 9  Martinelli – 8

Arsenal are now four points ahead of fifth placed Spurs, with the North London derby on Thursday. We’re also a point behind third place Chelsea, so Arsenal might snatch third place!

Read my other match reports and review here.

Arsenal v Brighton – Tom’s Match Report

The Line-Up

Tomiyasu, Partey and Tierney are now all out with long term injuries so Arteta played Granit Xhaka at left-back and Sambi Lokonga in midfield with Martin Ødegaard and Emile Smith Rowe. Having Xhaka at left-back meant the midfield had neither Xhaka or Partey and everyone in the ground agreed that was a bad thing.

Ramsdale

Soares White Gabriel Xhaka

Ødegaard Lokonga Smith Rowe

Saka  Lacazette  Martinelli

First Half

Arsenal were basically rubbish for the first 20 minutes but had a couple good chances to go in front, including a header from Gabriel Magalhaes from a free kick, swung in by Bukayo Saka. In the 28th minute, Leandro Trossard scored, easily slotting the ball in the top corner past Aaron Ramsdale, after a cross whipped in by Enock Mwepu, who got the assist.

Just before halftime, Martinelli equalised from a corner, again swung in by Saka, scoring a header from another header knocked on by Gabriel. Unfortunately, it was finally ruled out for offside by VAR after what felt like a few hours. I’ve watched it back loads of times and still don’t know if it really was offside. The point is, VAR is rubbish.

Second Half

Midway through the 2nd half, Mwepu scored Brighton’s second. It was a bullet strike, firing into the bottom left corner from the edge of the box following a great team move with an assist from Caicedo.

Arsenal finally improved and started to play well for the last 10 minutes. Ødegaard hit the bar from a freekick, then Nketiah hit the bar again from the rebound. Eventually Arsenal scored, in the 89th minute, through a deflected wonder strike produced by Martin Ødegaard from about 35 yards out. But it was too little, too late and the match ended 2-1 to the away side.

Arsenal are in a frustrating place right now, fifth in the table and on a bad run of form. Hopefully they can turn it around against Southampton next week.

Player Ratings

My Man of the Match was Martin Ødegaard because he used great technique to score his goal. The only really good thing about the game.

Ramsdale – 6

Soares – 6 White – 6 Gabriel – 5 Xhaka – 6

Ødegaard – 7 Lokonga – 5 Smith Rowe – 6

Saka – 6  Lacazette – 5  Martinelli – 6

Arsenal v Leicester – Tom’s Match Report

Before the game I was lucky to meet Freddie Ljungberg and Robert Pires, two of Arsenal’s legendary ‘Invincibles’.

The Line-Up`

Smith Rowe had been out with Covid last week and was back on the bench, so Martinelli kept his place on the left. Tomiyasu still isn’t fit so Cedric Soares started at right back.

Ramsdale

Soares White Gabriel Tierney

Ødegaard Thomas Xhaka

Saka Lacazette Martinelli

First Half

Arsenal started very brightly, Martinelli looking lively down the left wing and Cedric Soares putting crosses in the box from the right hand side of the pitch. Arsenal had some penalty shouts turned down by the referee and some great chances to score a goal. After Arsenal won a corner from a deflected Tierney cross, Thomas Partey scored a bullet header from a brilliant Martinelli corner. Partey had another chance to score but the ball hit the post.

Leicester built pressure over the rest of the first half but Arsenal stayed on top helped by Ben White, Gabriel Magalhaes and Thomas Partey all playing a part. Aaron Ramsdale also made incredible saves in the Arsenal goal.

Second Half

In the second half, Arsenal continued to be the better team having a few more chances to score a goal. Arsenal then had a brilliant chance to score from a swung in Ødegaard freekick with Ben White heading the ball onto the grass and Partey then using his head to direct the ball onto the goal line. During the freekick, the ball hit Söyüncü’s hand in the penalty area. After a five minute VAR check, referee Anthony Taylor was called to the monitor to check if it was a penalty. Eventually, he gave it and Alexandre Lacazette scored. Lacazette scores the penalty to make it 2 – 0. Arsenal controlled the rest of the match well and Arteta used all of the three substitutes bringing on Smith Rowe, Nketiah and Pepe.

Arsenal are now in fourth place in the Premier League table on fifty-one points with three games in hand over fifth placed Manchester United, on fifty points. Hopefully, Arsenal get to play in the Champions League next season!

Player Ratings

My Man of the Match was Thomas Partey because he was all over the pitch and scored a great goal. Odegaard, Saka and Martinelli were all really good as well.

Ramsdale – 7

Soares – 7 White – 7 Gabriel – 7 Tierney – 7

Ødegaard – 8 Thomas – 9 Xhaka – 8

Saka – 8 Lacazette – 7 Martinelli – 8

Right at the end I got to meet Alan Smith. He is a Sky Sports commentator and used to play for Arsenal.

Arsenal v Brentford – Tom’s Match Report

My dad and me at our first Arsenal matches

My dad’s first Arsenal match was on the 27th October 1990 versus Sunderland and 31 and a half years later, it was my turn. I’ve supported Arsenal all of my life but on 19th February 2022 I got to see them live at the Emirates for the first time, versus Brentford.

The Line-Up

I was happy with formation but it would have been good to have Takehiro Tomiyasu at right back instead of Cedric Soares. Soares did well in the end though.

Ramsdale

Soares White Gabriel Tierney

Thomas Xhaka

Saka Odegaard Smith Rowe

Lacazette

First Half

Arsenal had some good chances and scored an early goal, but sadly VAR said it was offside. This was annoying. We also had a few penalty shouts turned down by the referee and we still don’t know why. 🤷‍♂️

Overall, Arsenal were definitely the better team in the first half and unlucky not to score at least two goals before half time.

Second Half

In the second half, Arsenal scored two goals and had chances to score more. The first goal was scored by Emile Smith Rowe as he cut in from the wing using incredible control. Despite David Raya getting his fingertips to the ball, it nestled into the bottom right hand corner.

The second goal was scored by Bukayo Saka, who started the move off in his own half, feeding the ball forward to Lacazette who then passed to Thomas Partey as Saka carried on his quick sprint down the pitch. After striding forward into the Brentford half, Partey released the ball forward towards Saka who finished off the move with gentle control and ended the run of passes with a fantastic finish in-off the far post.

Arsenal players and fans celebrate Bukayo Saka’s goal to make it 2-0

Another highlight of the exciting second half was Odegaard’s outrageous dummy. Soares played the ball to him on the right side of the field and he pretended to smash it. Instead, he let the ball go underneath his foot and let it roll through to Saka so he started another attack.

In extra time in the second half, Brentford scored within the final few seconds with Christian Norgaard basically passing into the net.

The final score was 2-1 to Arsenal and we’ll be back at the Emirates for the game against Leicester in a few weeks.

Player Ratings

My Man of the Match was Emile Smith Rowe because he was great on the wing and his goal was really good. Although, the ‘keeper should really have saved it.

Ramsdale – 6

Soares – 6 White – 6 Gabriel – 7 Tierney – 7

Thomas – 6 Xhaka – 6

Saka – 8 Odegaard – 8 Smith Rowe – 9

Lacazette – 6

Here is my TikTok of our trip to the Emirates.

And another of the amazing Saka and Emile Smith Rowe song.