Scott Robson with his inimitable player ratings on a disappointing day. But we played pretty well, didn’t we?

Nick Pope – 8

Was it just me that thought Pope might have done better with the first? I’m sure you will all tell me if I’m talking balls about that one.

To be fair he made three great saves in quick succession afterwards and kept us in it with a vital block right on half time from Odegaard. Unfortunately we couldn’t take that second chance but Pope overall was excellent.

Kieran Trippier – 7

Dead ball delivery was off today, a big drop from the last two home games when he’s been right on it.

That’s the obvious take from the game, but look past that and he looked the player in our famed back four least perturbed by Arsenal’s runners. Right in amongst any carry on as well, which is worth a point really isn’t it?

Fabian Schär – 7

Quite a day for Schär. His outstretched leg (I think, I couldn’t really see from where I was) gave Arsenal a killer second, but could easily have cancelled that out by scoring two decent chances at the right end.

Should have done better with the header in my view as he was right in front of goal, and even at the end he almost sailed one in the top corner.

For a spell in the first half, Arsenal’s antics saw him lose his head for a few minutes but he wasn’t alone. Most of the ground was the same.

Sven Botman – 6

Out of all of our defenders Botman was bottom of the list of players that I was worried would struggle with the pace of Arsenal’s attack pre match, but that’s how it panned out.

Too many times in the first half after the first goal (which he should have closed down quicker), it was easy for Arsenal to get behind Botman. Had a decent first half chance as well. Still played well enough, but he was punished by Arsenal like we haven’t seen a side do all season.

Dan Burn – 7

Like Botman looked a bit startled when Odegaard came forward but his initial job today was to make life difficult for Saka and he did that well.

Like the game against Arsenal in London, Saka started the better but Burn got into the game and won the battle on points, though Burn was subbed before him.

TF MATCH REPORT: Newcastle United 0-2 Arsenal

Bruno Guimãraes – 6

Not the Bruno we love today I’m afraid, and my theory of him missing Longstaff might not get laughed out the place much longer.

Arsenal obviously did homework on him. Let’s face it they scouted him for a year before we gazumped them. Arsenal forced Bruno to be rushed. All those little intricate triangles, which make him look unbeatable normally, were hurried and it resulted, more often than not, with him losing the ball. Doesn’t look 100 percent fit either, but no excuses. Not at his best.

The turning point was that non pen though.

Joe Willock -6

Great chance to equalise when he burst through to the left of the box and was denied by a match winning tackle from Xhaka when United had Arsenal on the ropes. Again though not at his best and his old teammates did their homework.

Joelinton – 7

Lost possession quite a bit in the first half and Pope saved his arse after he lost it to Odegaard. Like Schär, his head went for a spell as the referee turned a blind eye to blatant time wasting and rolling around.

Second half he seemed to gather himself and in our best period after half time he was his normal self.

Jacob Murphy – 8

Back to normal. In Murphy’s case that means hitting the post at every opportunity he gets. I thought Murphy was excellent though. Yes, he fluffed a few final balls but almost set up Isak to score and in the first half he got us up that pitch, which I love.

What I also love is him kicking the ball out deep inside their half to wind them up. It worked. That gave him an extra point in a sea of sevens today.

TF LONG READS – Thinking Outside the (Pixelated) Box


Alexander Isak – 7

I was all for both Isak and Wilson starting, but the first half Arsenal had him tracking back towards his own goal rather than doing anything like he did to Everton. Too often he and Willock occupied the same space but in the second half he was excellent.

His header off the post probably set in concrete the fact it really wasn’t our day. But the experiment is worth persevering with.

Callum Wilson – 7

Should really have been ready to bury his 16th of the season but was left frustrated at the penalty which never was. It was actually his tenacity after a wayward Joelinton pass which started the move which saw Bruno’s shot blocked. Wilson gave his all and was in a physical battle all day. Nothing came off.



Miguel Almirón, for Murphy 65 minutes – 5

His impact wasn’t helped by Arsenal scoring soon after and that sucked the life out of United, who had obviously sent Miggy on to tip the balance our way. Could maybe have had a pen, but today one of our players would have had to be assassinated to get one of those.

Allan Saint Maximin, for Willock 78 minutes – 6

Good to see him back but despite some trademark crossfield slaloms he couldn’t change the match but was inches away late on.

Anthony Gordon, for Wilson 78 minutes – 5

Couldn’t really get into the game and let Arsenal out after they had been under the cosh with a silly free kick. He will learn.

Matt Targett, for Burn 81 minutes – 5

His corners were as successful as Trippier’s today. See further up the list.

Elliot Anderson, for Joelinton 81 minutes – 5

Looked a decent shout for a pen when he took a tumble and got at them in the 15 minutes he was on.

Scott Robson