Arsenal survived a last fright as he beat Huddersfield 2-1. A diverted strike by Alex Iwobi and an interception for Alexandre Lacazette were eventually enough for Arsenal to secure a valuable victory on the road.
Considering the players absent due to injury and illness, Unai Emery will be relieved to take the three points. Characters like Hector Bellerin, Rob Holding, Aaron Ramsey, Granit Xhaka and Sokratis Papastathopoulos would certainly have been involved if they were available.
Emery will also be happy to see Henrikh Mkhitaryan return from injury. His creativity has been greatly missed in recent weeks.
This performance was not particularly easy on the eyes. The arsenal played mainly on the break and never had any control of the game. In this regard, they really lost Xhaka.
It will be particularly exasperating for Emery to have conceded a late goal. Arsenal is now the only Premier League team still looking for the first clean sheet of the season away from home.
Manager rating out of 10
6 – Ultimately, Arsenal got what they needed: victory. However, there are many fans who question Emery's strategy. His decision to let Huddersfield take possession and hit them on the counterattack may have been deliberate, but his distressing gestation on the bottom line suggests otherwise.
Player rankings (1-10; 10 = best) Players introduced after 70 minutes do not get any votes)
GK Bernd Leno, 7 – The goalkeeper will be disemboweled for conceding a late goal, which made the final minutes more nervous than they should have.
DF Ainsley Maitland-Niles, 6 – With Hector Bellerin out due to injury, Maitland-Niles received the opportunity to claim his right as a defender of the right side of Arsenal. In this game, he played like a left-back on the right and came forward with good results, creating the second goal for Lacazette. It may be a little careless in possession, but this was an improved tour for the academy product.
DF Shkodran Mustafi, 5 – At his 100th appearance in Arsenal, Mustafi has not had a particularly positive day. He was very sloppy in the first half, with his control leaving him on the ground in more than one occasion. He looks like a player who really fights for trust.
DF Laurent Koscielny, 8 years old Playing at the center of Arsenal's three backs, Koscielny was the best defender of Arsenal on the day, just as it was for most of the last decade. Its positional sense and defensive instinct are as sharp as ever. However, he was lucky not to grant a penalty for a handball inside the box.
DF Nacho Monreal, 6 – Due to the fact that Sead Kolasinac is not the best defender, it makes sense to install Monreal as the center-left half behind him. However, Monreal looks like a player who is physically in decline. He made a simple elimination of the door line.
DF Sead Kolasinac, 6 – The left wingback of Arsenal has become their most reliable creative outlet. It was his well-considered cross that found Iwobi for the diverted owner, and continued to be very effective on the break. However, he stabbed at home the goal of Huddersfield in a bizarre way.
MF Lucas Torreira, 6 – Uruguayan had a fantastic start to his career in Arsenal, but he eased a bit during the winter months. With Arsenal struggling to control the center of the park, Emery decided to replace him with Mohamed Elneny.
MF Matteo Guendouzi, 7 – After an exceptional performance against Manchester City, Guendouzi seems to have grown in stature and confidence. His disappearance is becoming more and more ambitious and his willingness to get the ball under pressure gives Arsenal a vital outlet to escape the press.
MF Henrikh Mkhitaryan, 7 – A good return for the Armenian. Sharing creative responsibility with Iwobi, he found numerous dangerous pockets in space in the final third.
MF Alex Iwobi, 7 – The Nigerian national has been criticized for lack of the final product, so he will be happy to have seized the opportunity, even if he has arrived through a detour. He may have had another in the first half, ending emphatically only to be denied by an offside flag. The incongruity in his conclusion was evident when he went well in the second half but fired directly at the goalkeeper.
FW Alexandre Lacazette, 7 – Without his friend Aubameyang at his side, the pressure was on Lacazette to be delivered for Arsenal. He took home the second goal and commendably fought against central Huddersfield.
MF Mohamed Elneny, 6 – He approached Torreira (59) and unfortunately his first contribution was to prevent Lacazette from crossing with a header.
MF Denis Suarez, NR – Presented for Mkhitaryan (76) but made little impression.
MF Joe Willock, NR – The young man arrived for Iwobi (88) to make a surprise in the Premier League.