Tottenham v Arsenal player ratings: Bukayo Saka and Kai Havertz shine despite late derby drama

Bukayo Saka scored Arsenal’s second goal  (Getty Images)
Bukayo Saka scored Arsenal’s second goal (Getty Images)

Arsenal clung on to clinch a narrow north London derby win over Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday and keep their Premier League title hopes alive.

An own goal by Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and efforts from Bukayo Saka and Kai Havertz put the Gunners in control at halftime and although Spurs fought back through Cristian Romero’s strike and a Son Heung-min penalty the visitors claimed the three points in a 3-2 win.

Here is how the players rated.


Guglielmo Vicario, 4: Distracted by Ben White in the moments before Hojbjerg’s own goal and Havertz’s header. In the first instance Vicario might have stopped the ball had he been better positioned, while he should have come out and cleared the second. Saved well from Saka early in the second half.

Pedro Porro, 5: His position coming inside didn’t work: it meant the centre of the pitch was more congested and Spurs’ right side lacked threat. As a result, Porro had little impact on the game.

Cristian Romero, 6: Did well to earn big chances from set-pieces in the first half and a little unlucky to be marginally off target on both occasions. Finally got his goal in bizarre circumstances with a composed finish.

Micky van de Ven, 4: Jumped under the ball as Havertz nodded home Arsenal’s simple third goal. On the ball, Van de Ven too often played back to his goalkeeper rather than looking forwards, but his pace proved useful to deny a couple of counter-attacks.

Kai Havertz scores Arsenal’s third goal (Getty Images)
Kai Havertz scores Arsenal’s third goal (Getty Images)

Ben Davies, 3: Allowed Bukayo Saka inside on to his left foot too easily to score Arsenal’s second goal. Booked for a hack on Saka late in the piece.

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, 4: Did OK coming into Tottenham’s midfield but scored an own goal. Brought off on the hour.

Rodrigo Bentancur, 5: Showed attacking intent when he had the ball and made some intelligent runs in behind. Surprising to see him brought off at half-time.

Dejan Kulusevski, 6: Worked hard and was Tottenham’s biggest threat on the rare occasions he was able to dribble inside on to his left foot.

James Maddison, 5: Struggled to make an imprint on the game in a crowded central space and blazed an early half chance over the crossbar. Some good set-piece deliveries. Brought off after an hour.

Timo Werner, 5: Offered some pace and direct dribbling without any end product, before pulling up injured.

Son Heung-min, 5: Wasted Tottenham’s best chance in the first half with a rash shot over the crossbar. Took his penalty well after a long wait and build-up. Otherwise quiet.

Son fires home a late penalty (Getty Images)
Son fires home a late penalty (Getty Images)

Substitutes: Brennan Johnson, 5; Pape Matar Sarr, 5; Yves Bissouma, 5; Richarlison, 6; Lo Celso, 5.


David Raya, 4: Had very few saves to make before conceding a disastrous goal which saw Arsenal’s entire victory almost unravel.

Ben White, 7: Defended the back post excellently when called upon.

William Saliba, 7: Composed at the back and on the ball.

Gabriel, 8: Defended aggressively against Son and fought hard to keep a clean sheet before the game unexpectedly shifted in the second half.

Gabriel was doggged in defence (Getty Images)
Gabriel was doggged in defence (Getty Images)

Takehiro Tomiyasu, 7: Put in a typically strong full-back performance.

Thomas Partey, 8: Reliable and calm in possession when Arsenal needed it in the centre of the pitch when the match was at its most furious early on. Made a perfectly timed tackle to stop Kulusevski from entering the Arsenal box at the start of the second half. Took a smart booking to stop a late counter-attack.

Declan Rice, 7: Worked hard as ever off the ball and was a little unlucky in conceding a second-half penalty.

Leandro Trossard, 6: Bright going forwards without much of an impact. Worked hard off the ball before being replaced after an hour.

Bukayo Saka, 8: Excellent again, scoring and assisting en route to victory.

Martin Odegaard, 7: A typically solid performance and did well defensively when Spurs dominated possession in the early stages.

Kai Havertz, 8: Played a good throughball to pick out Saka for Arsenal’s second goal before getting himself on the scoresheet.

Substitutes: Gabriel Martinelli, 6; Jakub Kiwior, 5.