FA Cup semi final: Arsenal player ratings vs Wigan
Lukasz Fabianksi saved two penalties in the shootout as Arsenal beat a spirited Wigan side by 4-2 in penalties to reach the FA Cup final after a tactical 1-1 draw in regulation time. Arsene Wenger’s men were and truly on the wrong side of it when Jordi Gomez put the Latics ahead with a penalty midway in the second half but Per Mertesacker equalized minutes before the final whistle to restore parity. The Gunners then got the better of Wigan in penalties en route to the final, which now gives them a huge chance to win silverware after a barren run of nine years on the trot. Here are the Arsenal player ratings from Wembley.
Lukasz Fabianksi: Arsenal’s hero on the day as he saved two penalties in the shootout after he couldn’t do anything to save Jordi Gomez’s opening goal of the clash. It would be interesting to see with whom Wenger replaces the Pole in the summer.
Rating: 3.5/5 (Man of the match)
Bacary Sagna: It was a good shift in put by the Frenchman who showed great bursts of energy in the right wing, constantly going forward in his overlapping runs, but rarely finding a final product on his crosses.
Per Mertesacker: The big German gave away the penalty after fouling McManaman, but redeemed himself to restore parity with a well directed header, six minutes before the whistle.
Thomas Vermaelen: Was constantly plugged out of positions and given a torrid time by McManaman who got the better of the Belgian time and again in the first half. Vermealen though had a much more productive second half and looked at ease after MacManaman was subbed off.
Nacho Monreal: the Spaniard was withdrawn in the second half following an injury just before the Wigan penalty. Was replaced by Kieran Gibbs whose mistimed shot was directed in by Merteacker to get Arsenal’s equalizer.
Rating: 2/5, Gibbs: 2.5/5
Mikel Arteta: Not a great game according to his standards, as he passed the ball sideways without any great intent. However Arteta had a better second half, finding his range of passing and looking more solid. Needs to improve though.
Aaron Ramsey: Came on after a lengthy injury layoff, had a decent game in the middle of the park. Ramsey as usual made his late runs in the box, but the Welshman was much better at reading the game with his passing forays and drafting into spaces to see enough of the ball. Was replaced by Kim Kallstrom who was not given much time to impress.
Rating: 3/5, Kallstrom: 2.5/5
Alex Oxlade Chamberlain: Impressed throughout the entire match and was a constant menace with his rampaging pace and direct runs in Wigan’s territory. Was unlucky not to find any good targets with his passing layoffs.
Santi Cazorla: Had an average game for the Gunners but his major contribution being the winning penalty which he dispatched with relative ease under pressure.
Lukasz Podolski: A day off for the German who looked anonymous throughout and was rightly replaced by Olivier Giroud as Wenger shifted to a more conventional 4-4-2. The Frenchman had an attempt well saved by Wigan goalkeeper Scot Carson when the score was still tied.
Rating: 1.5/5, Giroud: 2.5/5
Yaya Sanogo: Should have scored but his inexperience cost him. He showed more willingness and desire to get into the right spaces but the young Frenchman can only improve.