VAR is a must in first-class football.
I’ve never been the biggest fan of the system, in fact I think it leads to more human error and frustration based on the incorrect individual opinion of the referee.
But, it would have changed Everton’s game.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang got Arsenal’s second and final goal of the game after being offside by a considerable distance when Aaron Ramsey made his pass, and it killed any chance of Everton getting back into the game.
Alexandre Lacazette’s first was a decent finish in all fairness, but Jonjoe Kenny could have been tighter to him. Either way, it’s another loss for the Blues, this time one that wasn’t reflective of how the game played out.
Without further ado, here is how we rate the Everton players following their defeat at the Emirates Stadium.
Jordan Pickford - 7
Pickford was largely solid in goal, making a great save in the first half to set the tone for the game.
Couldn’t do anything to stop Lacazette’s goal and was overloaded for Aubameyang’s. Unfortunate.
Jonjoe Kenny - 7
Kenny was clearly targeted by Arsenal in the first-half and held his own fairly impressively. He’s growing into his role on the right side of defence, but he could maybe have been a little tighter to Lacazette for Arsenal’s first.
Michael Keane - 7
Having only just come back from a bad injury sustained through being brave, Keane was willing to throw himself back into the mix from the off. Solid, and will definitely start going forward.
Kurt Zouma - 6
Looked more comfortable next to Keane than Mason Holgate, although he was sloppy in possession at times.
Lucas Digne - 6
Worked hard down the left flank and got into space a few times, but was largely ineffectual. Was often caught on the break too, being too tucked in and allowing Arsenal space out wide.
Tom Davies - 5
It’s difficult to see what Davies really added to Everton’s midfield unit. He worked hard and made some nice movements in the first half, but his passing and tackling became lazy in the second.
Idrissa Gana Gueye - 7
Much better display than against West Ham, Gana did the dirty work both in midfield and in his own box and linked play nicely.
Theo Walcott - 6
Walcott’s runs constantly cut through Arsenal’s defence and he was a real threat, but his lack of finishing ability or decision making in the final third restricts his rating to a 6. He needed to create more and take advantage of his abundance of early opportunities.
Gylfi Sigurdsson - 6
I personally wasn’t overly impressed with Gylfi today. He did his job rather adequately, but a player with his ability needs to make an impact and have his presence felt, and he didn’t do that.
Richarlison - 8
Everton’s finest player by an absolute mile. Richarlison oozes class in possession, works harder than any other Blue to win the ball back and creates chances galore. He deserved to be on the score-sheet today, if not for scoring then at least for providing an opportunity.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin - 5
Given the opportunity to stake a claim for his place following Cenk Tosun’s goal drought, DCL was very average. His pace helped him get behind Arsenal’s backline, but poor touches and slow decision making didn’t allow him to really contribute or put a sharp point on his attacking edge.
Cenk Tosun – 5
Didn’t have much an impact, game was mostly gone by his introduction.
Bernard – 5
See Cenk Tosun.