PLAYER REVIEWS: Fernandinho Leads The Show With Hector Bellerin Dominated By Raheem Sterling

Manchester City took another step on their seemingly inevitable rise to the Premier League title on Saturday, recording a 13th straight win against Arsenal.

The Gunners were no match for City, with the first half resembling a training drill as Pep Guardiola’s men controlled the game after Raheem Sterling’s opener.

On a night when City bolstered their 10-point lead at the top, JACK GAUGHAN reviewed the performances in the Emirates.

Raheem Sterling scored the only goal when Manchester City passed Arsenal on Saturday

Raheem Sterling scored the only goal when Manchester City passed Arsenal on Saturday

Raheem Sterling scored the only goal when Manchester City passed Arsenal on Saturday

Arsenal (4-2-3-1)

Bernd Leno – 6.5

Nothing he could do about the goal. Swept up well when the balls formed behind his back four.

Hector Bellerin – 5

He struggled against Raheem Sterling and couldn’t push him the other way.

Rob Holding – 6.5

The center-back shouldn’t have let Sterling bounce on him so easily for the opener. Recovered well afterwards.

Pablo Mari – 7

First start since January 9 – a run of nine games – but managed to withstand City’s move admirably.

Kieran Tierney – 6.5

Could have used more help from his midfielders defensively. Strong as always.

Mohamed Elneny – 6

Very careful with the ball and spent too much of the game behind the ball. Could have stamped more of a mark.

Granit Xhaka – 5.5

Only made a tackle in the 53rd minute and received a warning. Passive if Arsenal needed more bite.

Pepe – 5

It just didn’t affect the game enough. Mikel Arteta must have isolated Aleks Zinchenko from Pepe.

Martin Odegaard – 5.5

Virtually anonymous for much of the afternoon. The City players were too fast when he drifted into the bags.

Bakayo Saka – 7

Arsenal’s most prolific man in the future. Always a threat on the left, trying to attack the empty space left by the marauding Joao Cancelo.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – 6

No support whatsoever and just couldn’t occupy both of the City’s central defenders.


Alexandre Lacazette (for Odegaard, 73) – 6

Emile Smith Rowe (for Pepe, 73) – 6.5

Dani Ceballos (for Elneny, 86)

Concussion: David Luiz (for Holding, 82)

Subs not used: Ryan, Gabriel, Willian, Soares, Martinelli

Manchester City (4-1-5)

Ederson – 7

Barely had a chance to save, but performed well in clearing and distributing smartly.

Joao Cancelo – 6.5

Not as eye-catching individually, but his roaming still left the opposition confused.

John Stones – 7

Nothing flashes and that’s exactly what Pep Guardiola wants from the reborn Stones.

Ruben Dias – 7.5

Started moving forward in possession more regularly. Massive defense when called upon.

Aleks Zinchenko – 6.5

More of a traditional role when Cancelo plays. Maintained his position, although he seemed to get more forward later.

Fernandinho – 8

Dominant display as the sole sitting midfielder. Intercepted time and time again. A testament to his professionalism that he is occasionally dropped and still rules with authority.

Riyad Mahrez – 7.5

Magical feet, beautiful cross for the early opener. Has come into its own in recent weeks.

Bernardo Silva – 6

The role was more about dragging the Arsenal defenders from their stations and completing that task.

Kevin De Bruyne – 6.5

Nicely fitted back into midfield, some excellent moments. It doesn’t take long before he is fit again.

Ilkay Gundogan – 6.5

Possibly a bit rusty in the last third after a gnawing injury. Did not maintain the recent high standards, but others took responsibility.

Raheem Sterling – 7.5 points

Top head in the first two minutes and gave Bellerin a headache with his movement from the left.


Gabriel Jesus (for De Bruyne, 63) – 6

Subs not used: Steffen, Walker, Aguero, Laporte, Rodri, Torres, Mendy, Foden

Referee: Jon Moss 7

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