Blog | Arsenal Player Rankings | December 2018
Reminder: these scores are based on end product and what a player actually does to help their team win a game. Individual contributions do count, but players only receive the highest marks if the efforts help the team.
This features a list of the top 11 players who have appeared in at least 50% of the team’s games so far this season. Hopefully, there'll be fewer injuries and player sales meaning I can slowly up that figure as the season goes on and we see which players Emery rates as his first choice team.
As usual, the players are listed in reverse order counting down to the best player so far this season. Note: these rankings are only for up to the end of December and do not take into account the result against Fulham yesterday.
11. Hector Bellerin - average rating: 6.32
Still clinging on to the bottom of the list, but almost certain to slip off due to injury. Saying that, he might still hold on if the team's form doesn't improve.
10. Stephan Lichtsteiner - average rating: 6.33
And it's Hector's replacement who sneaks in ahead of him by the narrowest of margins, although his rating isn't exactly too hot either - only here because of the lack of quality elsewhere.
9. Lucas Torreira - average rating: 6.40
For all the praise he's received this season for toughening up the Arsenal midfield, he wasn't able to do a thing to stop the poor form of the side in December.
8. Bernd Leno - average rating: 6.44
I'm still impressed at how high Leno is in these rankings with how poor the defence in front of him is - even if his rating isn't actually that good, it's better than most at the back.
7. Alex Iwobi - average rating: 6.54
Continuing with the theme of December struggles, Iwobi hasn't been great when the team needed someone to step up - still feels like he's not quite ready as a regular starter yet.
6. Henrikh Mkhitaryan - average rating: 6.58
Dropping less than others thanks to injury meaning that he avoided some of the poor results - not to praise him too much as he wasn't particularly good when he did play.
5. Aaron Ramsey - average rating: 6.68
Still one of the team's top performers this season and it's still really stupid that he's being let go on a free transfer - this high thanks to decent productivity despite not featuring that regularly.
4. Mesut Ozil - average rating: 6.78
Contrary to what most people seem to think - including me - Ozil has quietly been going about his business, his levels dropping only a little compared to some of those around him.
3. Alexandre Lacazette - average rating: 6.81
Similar to Ozil, his level has only dipped a little and this is thanks to the team struggling to get the ball forward rather than any real drop in his own performance level.
2. Rob Holding - average rating: 6.91
It seems like so long ago now that Holding was injured that I was surprised to see him still make the list. It's testament to how good he has been that he is still this high, although he will inevitably disappear due to a lack of appearances eventually.
1. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: 7.25
Still top of the tree thanks to the fact that he just won't stop scoring. It doesn't bear thinking about where Arsenal might be if not for his goals.
December was comfortably the worst month of the season for results and performances, with no-one improving their rating over the course of the month. The fact that players who have missed multiple games through injury - like Bellerin, Mkhitaryan and Holding - are still on the list is a damning indictment of the standard of the rest of the squad.
Arsenal really do need strengthening at the back as soon as possible, otherwise it's going to take exceptional performances from the likes of Rob Holding to even come close to challenging the attacking players at the top of this list.