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Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang scored a hat trick and Arsenal ended a three-game Premier League winless streak with an entertaining 4-2 win over Leeds.
The hosts got off to a good start and took the lead in the 13th minute when Aubameyang dribbled into the box before returning the ball to the goal and passing Illan Meslier.
Just after the half hour, Bukayo Saka fell under the challenge of Liam Cooper in the area. Referee Stuart Attwell initially awarded a penalty, only to overturn his decision after a VAR check. Minutes later, Saka would do win a penalty, with Meslier fouling after stopping on the ball. Aubameyang made no mistake from the point of view to score his second goal and that of Arsenal.
Just before halftime, the Gunners showed great close control in the box with Hector Bellerin finally crushing home Dani Ceballos’ cute pass to make it 3-0. The Arsenal procession also continued after halftime, with Aubameyang completing his first Premier League hat trick in the 47th minute, nodding at home with a missed shot from Emile Smith Rowe to the back post.
Just before the hour mark, Leeds pulled one back with Pascal Struijk climbing higher to nod home from a corner. Soon after, they took a second as backups Tyler Roberts and Helder Costa combined to devastating effect. That fueled hopes for a glorious comeback from the Whites, but it didn’t, with Arsenal managing the match professionally to see victory.
Here are the Gunners and Leeds North London player ratings …
Bernd Leno (GK) – 6/10 – He could have done little for the goals. The layout could have been better.
Héctor Bellerin (RB) – 7/10 – He showed great composure to crush Arsenal’s third at home. Poor defense allowed Roberts to set up Leeds’ second.
David Luiz (CB) – 7/10 – Guilty of giving up possession too easily with some loose long passes. He did well on defense.
Gabriel (CB) – 7/10 – He read things quite well and effectively stopped the tide after the second half rally from Leeds.
Cedric Soares (LB) -7/10 – Engaged in an intense duel with Raphinha. He managed to keep the winger calmer than other full-backs in recent weeks.
Granit Xhaka (CM) – 7/10 – He assisted the starter with a precise pass. It also distributes the work quite well.
Dani Ceballos (CM) – 7/10 – Prepared Bellerin with the game pass. Connected with the front four wonderfully at times.
Martin Odegaard (AM) – 7/10 – Involved in a decent amount of Arsenal’s promising attacks.
Bukayo Saka (RW) – 9/10 – A constant threat. His tight control within the Leeds area was a delight to behold and he was heavily involved in the preparation of his team’s second and third goals.
Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang (ST) – 9/10 – Toasted his return to the starting eleven with a double. He needs to keep this up to help the Gunners get their season back on track.
Emile Smith Rowe (LW) – 8/10 – An important cog in Arsenal’s relentless machine going forward. He took some dangerous positions and also threatened to run behind.
Willian – 10/6 – It is not as dangerous as Smith Rowe.
Mohamed Elneny – 6/10 – He added some solidity in midfield and helped the Gunners see the result.
Rob Holding – N / A
Illan Meslier (GK) – 3/10 – Oh my, oh my, oh my Guilty in all three goals, with his stupid knocking down Saka in a particularly low situation.
Jamie Shackleton (RB) – 6/10 – Given his first start in some time and it showed, as he struggled to deal with Smith Rowe’s clever move. He improved after moving to midfield.
Luke Ayling (CB) – 5/10 – He made a major block in the first half, but his positioning left a lot to be desired.
Liam Cooper (CB) – 5/10 – Very robust. Something fortunate that the VAR annulled its penalty decision.
Ezgjan Alioski (LB) – 5/10 – Wasted possession and only won half of their ground matches. Started just after halftime to facilitate Leeds’ change of style.
Pascal Struijk (DM) – 6/10 – Its heading was a textbook. However, he struggled to fill the void left by Kalvin Phillips, as he did not possess the same passing range.
Raphinha (RM) – 7/10 – Continued his recent good form with a good performance. He was a potent creative force, recording three key passes.
Stuart Dallas (CM) – 5/10 – He worked hard but Arsenal played around him quite easily.
Mateusz Klich (CM) – 5/10 – Not his best moment. He was chasing shadows before being retired at the hour mark.
Jack Harrison (LM) – 5/10 – Missed a pretty good opportunity early on that could have changed the course of things. Take off at rest.
Patrick Bamford (ST) – June 10 – Hungry for service for much of the game. He came to life in the second half when his team cheered up.
Helder Costa – 6/10 – He gave Arsenal a fourth goal within seconds of entering the break. He made up for it with a decent finish.
Tyler Roberts – 7/10 – Assisted Costa for the second for Leeds, diving behind and throwing the ball with precision.
Niall Huggins – 6/10 – Completed solidly at right back and threatened to advance at times as well.