Arsenal 2-1 Chelsea: FA Cup final player ratings

Louise Taylor on 1 August 2020

Arsenal (3-4-3)

Emiliano Martínez 6 The Argentinian made an important early save from Mason Mount before being beaten by Christian Pulisic’s fine finish. Ultimately had rather less to do than widely expected but did he handle outside the area? Looked commanding.

Rob Holding 6 Quietly effective on the right of Mikel Arteta’s back three. Enabled David Luiz and Kieran Tierney to strut their high calibre defensive stuff while also combining well with Héctor Bellerín.

David Luiz 7 The Chelsea old boy who divides opinion like few others impressed, proving near error-free. Lampard’s gameplan endeavoured to isolate the Brazilian, denying him time, space and passing options but David Luiz reminded his former employer of his quality before limping off late.

Kieran Tierney 8 One of the game’s standout performers impressed on the left of defence. Linked very well with Ainsley Maitland-Niles. All about connectivity and joining the dots for Arteta.

Héctor Bellerín 7 His wonderful advance played a huge part in creating Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s second goal. Helped drive Arsenal forward from right wing-back.

Dani Ceballos 9 Outstanding, a real man-of-the-match contender. His role in Arsenal’s fightback should not be underestimated. Displayed streetwise credentials as he ensured Mount was undeservedly booked.

Granit Xhaka 7 Made important interceptions in midfield and Chelsea will have the bruises to show for his tackling. Combined superbly with Ceballos. How his career has changed for the better since last October.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles 8 Supplied a gorgeous cross to cue up Aubameyang for an early missed chance. Passed and moved intelligently, a big reason why so much of Arsenal’s first-half play travelled down the left.

Nicolas Pépé 6 The Ivorian had to settle for an industrious bit-part role but had a well taken first-half “goal” rightly disallowed for a tight offside.

Alexandre Lacazette 6 Half of one of the most intriguing subplots, namely his duel with Kurt Zouma. Worked hard before his late replacement by Eddie Nketiah.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang 9 Arteta’s Mr Magnificent spurned a decent early opening but soon struck his 28th goal of the season courtesy of a textbook penalty won by cleverly drawing a foul and making sure he fell in the area. Number 29 was even better.

Substitutes Eddie Nketiah (for Lacazette 82) n/a; Sokratis Papastathopoulos (for David Luiz 88) n/a; Sead Kolasinac (for Tierney 90) n/a

César Azpilicueta brings down Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for the equalising penalty.
César Azpilicueta brings down Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for the equalising penalty. Photograph: Catherine Ivill/AP

Chelsea (3-4-3)

Willy Caballero 6 The final’s other Argentinian goalkeeper was afforded no chance to save Aubameyang’s excellent equalising penalty, let alone his brilliant winner.

César Azpilicueta 4 Chelsea’s captain was booked and conceded the penalty after losing composure. Struggled to cope with Arsenal’s attacking pace before hobbling off in tears with a hamstring injury.

Kurt Zouma 5 Chelsea’s high line dictated he initially found Lacazette a handful. Moved to the right of the back three after Azpilicueta limped off but it was still not his day.

Antonio Rüdiger 5 Struggled against Arsenal’s amalgam of seamless acceleration and sharp movement. Lost concentration in preamble to Aubameyang’s goal and lost his temper a few times unnecessarily. Sensibly replaced by Callum Hudson-Odoi.

Reece James 5 Caught out of position too often as Arsenal advanced. Offered odd glimpses of his quality and immense potential but too erratic. His passing proved slapdash at times.

Jorginho 5 Frank Lampard’s midfield general assumed the captain’s armband after Azpilicueta’s injury but could not quite turn the tide. Outthought and outfought by Ceballos and Xhaka.

Mateo Kovacic 6 Smart passing and intelligent link play initially flattered to deceive before he was harshly sent off for a second yellow card, sealed by a soft “foul” on Xhaka.

Marcos Alonso 5 The odd sloppy clearance emphasised this was not the left wing-back’s best game. Concentration sometimes seemed suspect.

Mason Mount 6 Forced Martínez into a stellar early save. Harshly booked when Ceballos tricked the referee but played key role in Pulisic’s goal. Timed his runs almost as well as Lampard once did.

Olivier Giroud 7 Veteran centre-forward’s guile and hold-up skills ruffled Arteta’s defence . Created Pulisic’s goal with a craftsman’s touch. Replaced by Tammy Abraham late on.

Christian Pulisic 9 Lampard’s best player. His clever, quick feet proved one of the game’s highlights. Scored a fabulous goal butwas forced off with a hamstring pull. That injury arguably served as the catalyst for Arsenal’s win.

Substitutes Andreas Christensen (for Azpilicueta 35) Operated between Zouma and Rüdiger. Caught out in buildup to Aubameyang’s winner. 6

Pedro (for Pulisic 49) Carried off after dislocating his shoulder in stoppage time. 6

Callum Hudson-Odoi (for Rüdiger 78) n/a; Tammy Abraham (for Giroud 78) n/a; Ross Barkley (for Mount 78) n/a

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