Player Ratings: Watford 1-3 Arsenal

After failing to win their opening two games of the season, Arsenal picked up their first three points of the season against Watford on Saturday afternoon, but who were the key men behind the win?


Petr CECH: 8

After conceding four on the opening day against Liverpool and only facing one shot on target during last weekend’s visit to Leicester, the veteran goalkeeper was back to his best today as a number of solid saves kept Watford at bay in the second half. Had no chance with Pereyra’s effort.

Hector BELLERIN: 7

The Spaniard is beginning to find his feet this season as he and Walcott linked up well down the right hand side, confirming once more that he is one of, if not the best attacking full-back in the league.

Rob HOLDING: 7

The baptism of fire suffered in his debut against Liverpool now looks well behind him as the former Bolton boy enjoyed another strong performance alongside Koscielny in defence. Likely to lose his spot to new signing Shkodran Mustafi but he’ll get chances in the coming weeks and months.

Laurent KOSCIELNY: 7

The Frenchman was in imperious form last weekend against Leicester City and he was in good form again here. It’ll be interesting to see how Arsenal’s defence looks with him and Mustafi as the club’s new first-choice pairing.

Nacho MONREAL: 6

Arsenal’s experienced full-back enjoyed a better game against Leicester than he did against Liverpool but had something more of a mixed bag here, coming off in the second half with a slight knock. Not quite at his best yet.

Santi CAZORLA: 8

The Gunners’ draw with Leicester seemed to pass Cazorla by last week as he made little impact, but here he was much more effective. He was composed and influential with the ball at his feet in the middle of the park and he converted his penalty well to give his side an early lead.

Granit XHAKA: 8

Arsenal’s expensive new midfielder gave the best indication yet as to why Arsene Wenger opted to shell out £30m or more on him this summer as he consistently passed the ball well from the middle of the park. A particularly well-deployed pass to Theo Walcott was the highlight of his game, although an industrious display in terms of tackling and intercepting will not have gone unnoticed.

Theo WALCOTT: 7

With the decision to move him from the striker position back to the wing, Walcott seems to have regained some of the confidence which had clearly deserted him last season. Some hard work and a great cross from Alexis’ goal will help earn him back some of the love from Arsenal fans.

Mesut OZIL: 8

During a late cameo against Leicester last week Arsenal’s record signing proved once more quite how important he is to the side and it was the case again here. Constantly finding space and working the ball, Ozil looked incredibly sharp throughout before scoring a well-taken header on the brink of half-time to all but confirm his side’s victory.

Alex OXLADE-CHAMBERLAIN: 6

Unfortunately for Oxlade-Chamberlain it’s looking like once again his strong pre-season form is beginning to fade as the season has begun and he’ll be disappointed at the little impact he made here. Don’t be surprised to see him out of the team before long.

Alexis SANCHEZ: 9 – MOTM

An undoubted highlight of this win was the superb display from the brilliant Chilean after two very underwhelming performance so far this season. He won the penalty to give Arsenal the lead, met Walcott’s cross to score the second and then hit a perfect cross for Ozil to head home the third. A brilliant day at the office for Alexis.

SUBSTITUTES

Jack WILSHERE (on 70): 6

Arsenal dropped off in the second half and Wilshere didn’t do much in the way of adding to their attack. A late booking was unneeded.

Mohamed ELNENY (on 70): 6

Came on to sure up the midfield and did so well without offering anything special.

Kieran GIBBS (on 74): N/A

Introduced late for the injured Monreal.

Callum Perritt

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