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Arsenal see Martinelli and Saka shine with 7/10 but slip to another draw

Arsenal see Martinelli and Saka shine with 7/10 but slip to another draw

ESPN

MANCHESTER -- Fernandinho scored a 90th minute own goal as Manchester City were held to a 2-2 draw by Crystal Palace despite Pep Guardiola's scoring twice themselves in the final eight minutes.

Sergio Aguero thought he had won the game with goals in the 82nd and 87th minutes to cancel out Cenk Tosun's opener with his first Palace goal following his loan move from Everton. But moments after Aguero's second, Fernandinho turned in Wilfried Zaha's cross to hand Palace a point and see City lose more ground in the title race.

Positives

If you believe Guardiola, his team are playing only for pride and a place in next season's Champions League. Given Liverpool's huge lead at the top, it would be easy for City to roll over having found themselves a goal down but they didn't. It also helps when you've got a striker as good as Aguero in top form -- he's got seven goals in his last four games -- and the Argentinian's late double should have been enough to earn three points.

Negatives

Elements of Saturday's game will have infuriated Guardiola. Palace's first goal came from a set piece that should have been dealt with and having put themselves in front, City managed to concede a last minute equaliser when they should have been able to see out the rest of the game. If Aguero was a positive, they was plenty to upset the City manager.

Manager rating (out of 10)

6 -- Guardiola picked a strong team despite playing again in midweek but they struggled to find any rhythm in the first half. His decision to throw on Gabriel Jesus and Riyad Mahrez in the second half looked to have to worked before the late own goal.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best, players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Ederson, 6 -- Made a good save when Tosun expertly brought down Wilfried Zaha's pass on the edge of the penalty area.

DF Joao Cancelo, 6 -- Thought he had won a penalty in the second half when his cross cannoned of Jairo Riedewald's foot and hand before the decision was overturned by VAR.

DF Benjamin Mendy, 6 -- His first-half performance prompted praise from Aymeric Laporte on social media and it was his cross from which Aguero headed in City's second.

DF John Stones, 4 -- Got away with a penalty shout in the first half when he bundled over Zaha in the area, was out-jumped by Gary Cahill for the Palace opener and couldn't get near Zaha in the build up to Fernandinho's own goal. Awful afternoon.

DF Fernandinho, 6 -- Terrific covering to stop Tosun scoring after a long punt upfield that caught out Ederson. Unlucky to turn in Zaha's cross in the last minute.

MF Ilkay Gundogan, 6 -- Was left watching at the back post when Tosun headed in to give Palace the lead after 39 minutes.

MF Kevin De Bruyne, 6 -- Hit the crossbar with a stunning free-kick from 30 yards after 14 minutes. Struggled to see much of the ball after that.

MF David Silva, 5 -- The Spaniard's 300th league game for City. His afternoon was over on the hour mark after he slipped and miscontrolled a pass in midfield.

MF Bernardo Silva, 6 -- Almost equalised but saw a fierce drive well saved by Vicente Guaita and had a close range effort saved by the Palace goalkeeper after the break.

FW Raheem Sterling, 6 -- Had a quiet afternoon and was sacrificed late one when Guardiola tried to close out the game by bringing on Rodri.

FW Sergio Aguero, 7 -- Fantastic movement at the back post to stab in Gabriel Jesus cross for his 250th Man City goal, then thought he had won it with a late header.

Substitutes

FW Gabriel Jesus, 6 (for David Silva, 61) -- Created the equaliser for Aguero.

FW Riyad Mahrez, NR (for Bernardo Silva, 73) -- On too late to make an impact at the attacking end.

MF Rodri, NR (for Raheem Sterling, 89) -- Introduced late on to limit Palace's attacks.

Arsenal were unable to secure their second Premier League win under Mikel Arteta as they drew 1-1 with Sheffield United at the Emirates.

The Gunners took the lead on the stroke of half-time courtesy of a Gabriel Martinelli tap-in, only for a late John Fleck strike to stun the home fans in North London.

Positives

Patience was key for the Gunners in the sort of professional display that saw them avoid too many silly mistakes at the back and impose themselves physically in the middle of the park. Even as the visitors built their way back into the game, Arsenal were a constant threat on the counter, which felt like an intentional way of playing against a dangerous Sheffield United side.

Negatives

At times the Gunners showed Sheffield United too much respect and they should have cut them off at the source. They didn't put their foot on the pedal, which indicates a lack of confidence, and the home fans will be hoping they don't see this sort of trepidation too many more times at the Emirates this season. Once again, a draw is the result from a winning position.

Manager rating

7 -- The old chant of "1-0 to the Arsenal" seemed like it was the core focus for Arteta with both his team selection, which was daring and different, and the way they played. Arsenal didn't rush into any silly decisions; they switched the ball from side to side and through the middle, as opposed to sticking to the same game plan. Still, a distinct lack of focus for the entire 90 minutes seems to be harming them, as evidenced by the equaliser.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best, players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Bernd Leno, 6 -- While there wasn't too much he could do for the equaliser, Arsenal's No. 1 needs to start dealing with set pieces better, and his positioning needs a lot of work.

DF Ainsley Maitland-Niles, 5 -- Was lucky he didn't assist a goal for the opposition after giving the ball away in the eighth minute. A poor showing and his attacking prowess was called into question alongside his decision-making for Sheffield United's equaliser.

DF Shkodran Mustafi, 6 -- Playing out from the back doesn't fit into how Mustafi likes to play, although he looked more composed in the second half than he has done in a long time.

DF David Luiz, 5 -- Aside from knocking it back and forth between his fellow defenders, Luiz looks devoid of ideas in comparison to the confidence he showed during his Chelsea days.

DF Bukayo Saka, 7 -- Carried the game at times for Arsenal with a strong defensive presence to go alongside a tremendous assist for the opening goal.

MF Lucas Torreira, 7 -- It was an excellent showing for the midfield maestro, who continues to get back to his best with great vision, timing and passing throughout.

MF Granit Xhaka, 7 -- The controversial midfielder put in a controlled shift for Arsenal and seems to be maturing with each game under the guidance of Arteta.

FW Nicolas Pepe, 6 -- Pepe always looks slick on the ball, but when there's no end product behind that, as was the case today, Arsenal will keep questioning his £72m price tag.

AM Mesut Ozil, 5 -- The German has a habit of going missing in the big games, and that was precisely what happened here. At times, he just didn't look interested.

FW Gabriel Martinelli, 7 -- The young poacher poked home Arsenal's only goal of the day, but Martinelli needs to be given more service from those around him.

ST Alexandre Lacazette, 6 -- Sheffield United really got after the forward, and while he did play in a great pass to start off the move for Arsenal's goal, he needs to show more grit up top in the absence of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Substitutions

FW Eddie Nketiah, N/A -- Looked lost and lazy during his brief cameo after replacing Lacazette.

ESPN