Atishay Agarwal usually sends over his player ratings after every game but his lack of internet connection in India has meant he soldiered on and sent it via his mobile phone instead. Good effort Atishay. So for authenticity (not laziness)…I have left any spelling mistakes/format etc as it was sent.
Manuel Almunia – 6 – As has been the case so far this season, he wasn’t really tested with many shots on target, especially with Bangoura’s crazy shooting. I hear some of those balls are still orbiting Earth as we speak. Our new No.1 gave away the direction of his dive too early on the penalty, though.
Bacary Sagna – 5.5 – I agree completely with the lad that it wasn’t a penalty, but he should know better than to stand behind his man in the penalty area with his hands around him. Otherwise too, he had a mediocre game.
Kolo Toure – 6 – He did well for most part of the game, barring a slightly shaky phase in the second half. Helped restrict their forwards to shots from distance.
William Gallas – 5 – Okay, i know i might get a pasting for this, considering he scored the equalizer (which would have gone in without his touch), but it was his schoolboy-ish error that led to their attack before the penalty. Even after the goal, his defending was very poor for the next fifteen minutes. Everyone is now going ga-ga over his leadership qualities because he scored in the dying minutes, but being the captain, he needs to cut down on the costly errors he makes every now and then.
Gael Clichy – 5.5 – He had a poor outing, and was caught out of position many times. Should have done better to prevent the cross which led to the penalty as well. In short, both our fullbacks are yet to rediscover their form of last season.
Theo Walcott – 7.5 – We’ve often been criticized for not putting up a fight when facing ‘roughing-up’ tactics, but Theo did more than just fight, he stood up and and set up the equalizer in the dying minutes. Was clearly targeted by their left back just like Reyes was by Neville a few years back, the difference being that Theo’s got the stomach for a fight.
Denilson – 6 – The young Brazilian is somewhat of a mixed bag at the moment, with one iffy performance following every good one. he was a shadow of the player he was at Ewood Park, and could soon lose his place in order for Song to get a decent run.
Cesc Fabregas – 5.5 – Well, he doesn’t look himself at the moment. Either he’s carrying an injury, or he’s too tired. In all, he looks jaded, and not even half as involved in general play, or even goal celebrations, as he used to be. Half an hour into the game, my friend asked, “Where’s Cesc?” That says it all.
Alex Song – 7 – I wanted to see him play a full match, and I was impressed. I think he has the qualities that are required for a CDM, and he gave a very good account of himself in Kiev. Got stuck into challenges, and kept it simple with his passing and movement. One could immediately see that we were more susceptible defensively once he came off. Want to see him start an EPL game now.
Robin Van Persie – 7 – To be fair to the lad, he was placed on the left wing, not the position he usually plays in for us, so it was never going to be a classic Van Persie performance anyway. What impressed me was his commitment to the cause, and that he kept trying right till the end. He needs to get the right shooting boots on though.
Emmanuel Adebayor – 6.5 – Again, like Van Persie, tried all he could throughout the game, and could have got on the scoresheet, if Gallas hadn’t literally snatched his goal! Anyway, he still misses chances like he did last season. But he gets so many that he’s bound to score many. Good effort.
Emmanuel Eboue – 6.5 – Was on for just twelve minutes, but gave us a little more pace in attack.
Nicklas Bendtner – 5 – He didn’t do much to be honest, and needs some more playing time to get his confidence back.
Carlos Vela – NA – Cant rate him for just two touches, can I?