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Match Report and Player Ratings: Manchester City 0-0 Arsenal (Premier League)



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Manchester City looked to be the only side who came to play on Sunday as Arsenal refused to attack en route to a cagey, disappointing, yet somehow thrilling 0-0 draw.

That draw sees Arsenal concede top spot in the table to rivals Liverpool, who now hold a three point lead over third-place Premier League champions City. The hosts dominated possession, however Arsenal’s defensive structure prevented the Blues from creating any chances.

The best chance for either side came in the 15th minute when Nathan Ake had a golden opportunity to break the deadlock. The defender was able to get on the end of a Kevin De Bruyne corner, but his header from inside the six-yard-box was directed right at David Raya, who couldn’t even react in time to make a real save.

Just 10 minutes later Manchester City were handed yet another fitness concern when the aforementioned Ake began to show signs of a calf injury. The Dutch defender was quickly forced off and replaced by Rico Lewis

Despite a slow start, Arsenal began to edge into the game. A handful of turnovers by Manchester City gave the Gunners a few chances against the run of play. But time and time again their chances fell to Gabriel Jesus, who usurpingly was unable to take advantage.

Throughout the first half, referee Anthony Taylor refused to show a card despite an increasing amount of cynical and tactical fouls. It was a display of bizarre decision-making that carried into the second half. 

After the first 45, both clubs were tied with shots (4) and shots on target (1), in what was one of the cagiest matches in recent memory.The second half started identical to the first, with City taking control from the start. The treble winners had another big opportunity to take the lead inside the first 90 seconds when Mateo Kovacic’s curling effort was just inches too wide. 

Despite growing into the game late in the first half, Arsenal looked even less involved in the match and were forced deeper into their own third. Pep Guardiola recognised this and brought on Jeremy Doku and Jack Grealish for Foden and Kovacic 15 minutes after the restart.

It wasn’t until the 67th minute that an Arsenal player was booked, ironically enough it went to Gabriel Jesus for time wasting. But by this point, City were in full control. Arsenal’s decision to sit deeper was only inviting more pressure.

Manchester City had another big chance to break the deadlock in the 84th minute when a loose ball trickled to the edge of the net. Haaland attempted to chop the ball back to Ruben Dias who was unmarked, but the Norwegian snatched at his attempt.

The Sky Blues continued to try and find a hole in Arsenal’s defence, but the title challengers refused to give an inch of space and played for the draw to close out the match. Manchester City now have just nine matches to try and make up the three-point lead Liverpool now has.

Here are the individual player ratings from Manchester City’s draw with Arsenal!

Player Ratings

Stefan Ortega – 7.5

Was rarely called on but made the saves he needed to and had solid distribution.

Manuel Akanji – 7

Operated in numerous positions throughout the match through tactical instruction and forced scenarios, but was largely faultless in all.

Ruben Dias – 7.5

Commanded the centre of defence with a number of partners throughout, and kept the door shut on a bright Arsenal attack.

Nathan Ake – 6

Nothing he could do more in the time he was on the field, and we await confirmation around his injury that forced a substitution after 30 minutes.

Josko Gvardiol – 8

Best player on the pitch in the first-half. Excellent in possession and created a few chances with his crosses as well. Was called on less in the second half once Jack Grealish came on. 

Rodri – 8.5

It was a slow start but Rodri had full control of the match by the second half. Our Man of the Match through the way he commanded Manchester City’s midfield.

Kevin De Bruyne – 7

A very quiet first half but like everyone else he was better in the second. Didn’t have as much space to work with as previous games, but he wasn’t as poor as previous matches.

Mateo Kovacic – 7.5

Was tasked with providing control similar to how Bernardo Silva has in seasons past. Did an excellent job breaking Arsenal’s press in the first half. Wasn’t needed in the second half with how defensive Arsenal became. 

Bernardo Silva – 8

Just the epitome of a big game player. Was perfect on the ball and refused to lose possession. 

Erling Haaland – 6.5

Battled with Gabriel for every single ball, didn’t have too much service to work with but needed to haver done better on the cut back pass to Ruben Dias.

Phil Foden – 6.5

A quiet performance. Arsenal were so compact when out of possession that we hasn’t able to find any space to work in. Understand why Pep Guardiola withdrew him relatively early into a tense second-half.


Rico Lewis – 7

Settled into the game comfortably given the circumstances, and was assured on and off the ball.

Jeremy Doku – 7

A largely stereotypical Jeremy Doku performance; beating his man with ease only to give the ball away.

Jack Grealish – 7

The Jack Grealish performance we have become accustomed too, but fantastic to see the control brought back into the forward line, and hopefully a run of games is now on the horizon for the Englishman.