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Man of the Match: Aaron Ramsey

Aaron Ramsey, scorer of a trademark goal, is our man of the match.

It's guy love
It's guy love
Clive Mason/Getty Images

The debate over whether Arsène Wenger should play Aaron Ramsey or Santi Cazorla in central midfield was, in typical Arsenal fashion, ended by injury. The debate has already been discussed in depth on this website, and this author's position is clear. Since Ramsey has returned to central midfield, though, he has shown why he really is best suited to the position, scoring twice and assisting twice in the three games since, and re-instigating the successful and excellent partnership he has with Mesut Özil.

Ramsey is rare, in that he is both an excellent defensive player, excellent goal-scorer, excellent passer and excellent creative player. The first two qualities were on show with Arsenal's second goal--Ramsey won the ball, and then sprinted 70 yards to finish off the devastating counter attack. He won 5 tackles over all, allowing Mathieu Flamini to play deeper, which better protects both Flamini, and Arsenal's back 4. He passed to Mesut Özil 19 times, and received the ball from Özil 18 times (for comparison, Özil only passed to Cazorla more than 16 times once this season, and Özil passed to Ramsey 31 times last week against Sunderland), and completed 71/78 passes today, only losing possession four times in the middle third (Cazorla lost the ball seven times in the middle third in his last match).

And for all the concerns that Ramsey is too much of an attacking player, who'll leave the midfield exposed, he was far more reserved today, because he is an all around excellent central midfield player. Arsenal have looked re-energised with Ramsey in the midfield, with Olivier Giroud, Mesut Özil and Theo Walcott all looking in sharper form since last Saturday. He makes everyone and everything better, and I love him dearly.