Paddy Davitt: Player ratings after Canaries' 1-0 Arsenal loss

Norwich City keeper Tim Krul gets an explanation from Michael Oliver following Arsenal's match-winning goal

Tim Krul gets an explanation from Michael Oliver following Arsenal's match-winning goal in Norwich City's 1-0 Premier League defeat - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Here is Paddy’s verdict on Daniel Farke’s much-changed Norwich City side, who traded blows with the Gunners before running out of gas at the Emirates.

• Tim Krul   6

Tipped Nicolas Pepe’s strike onto a post but his luck was out when the ricochet clipped the opposite post and eventually squirted to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to finish, before the VAR officials correctly adjudged he was onside.

Later denied Aubameyang a second when he kicked away a strike and then a fantastic parry to foil Emile Smith-Rowe, after his wayward kick fell to a home shirt. Easier shift in the first half but did have to deal with Albert Lokongo’s 25 yard shot.  

• Max Aarons   6

Good duel with Bukayo Saka. Robbed once just after half-time in a dangerous position but Andrew Omobamidele came to his aid. Was unable to bring Tim Krul's angled clearance under control in the sequence that led to Arsenal's winner.

Norwich's most productive front foot attacking outlet, offering plenty of width down the right.

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Fizzed in a cross Kenny McLean glanced wide. Then collected another Pierre Lees-Melou switch to dip inside and curl a left footer at Aaron Ramsdale.

Had arguably City’s best sighter, when they fell behind, but a wild left-footed swing on the half volley sailed over. 

• Grant Hanley (C)   6

Felt Saka handled in the build up to the goal but should still deal with the situation better. Bravely halted a Martin Odegaard first half blockbuster and then stuck his head in again when Aubameyang looked to connect on the penalty spot.

Took a yellow card for hauling back the Gunners’ captain early in the second half.

Showed that pace to race around on the cover again when Aubameyang threatened to run in behind in the 55th minute. Added aerial ballast in the opposition box in a late flurry of set piece deliveries.

• Andrew Omobamidele 6

Big day but took it in his stride. Selected for his pace and athleticism.

Showed his ability to read a game when he cut out a Saka throughball destined for Aubameyang. 

Headed a Pepe inswinger clear inside his own box. 

Another key interception halted Lokongo following Aarons’ loss of possession. Certainly posed the question for his head coach moving forward with Ben Gibson and Ozan Kabak now waiting in the wings. 

• Brandon Williams   8

Excellent after a testing start up against Pepe. Set the tone with two interceptions at the cost of corners inside the opening 15 minutes.

The timing of his tackling was a particularly eye-catching feature. One superb block to halt Pepe five minutes from the interval drew applause from Farke.

A goal-saving block foiled Pepe in the 57th minute. One blemish when he allowed the wide player to check onto his left and unleash a shot Krul pushed onto the post in the build up to the winner.  

• Lukas Rupp   6

Show of faith from his coach with Billy Gilmour and Mathias Normann left on the bench. Vital sliding blocks to halt Saka and Kieran Tierney. 

A blind pass across his own penalty box went straight to Smith-Rowe, but rectified the situation to produce a block.  

NCFC Extra: Paddy's Pointers after Norwich City's Arsenal defeat

• Pierre Lees-Melou  6

Couple of quality switches to find Aarons tight to the right touchline. Shaped to shoot in the 34th minute but opted for a clever threaded ball for Teemu Pukki, who was crowded out.

Influence waned dramatically in the second half. Couple of sloppy passes enticed Arsenal forward. 

• Kenny McLean  6

Was under pressure when he rose to meet Aarons’ cross but got enough on it to have tested Ramsdale. That aerial presence was evident at the opposite end when he made a near post clearance from Pepe’s corner.

Lovely spin away from Lokongo set Norwich free on the counter. 

• Kieran Dowell   6

Big call from Farke to restore Dowell to the line up, who he suggested merited a spot for the manner he had trained and the tactical aspect of trying to subdue Tierney. One fine piece of retrieval work recycled the ball for Aarons to tee up McLean.

Left-footed free kick clipped the top of the Arsenal wall. Promising signs of an understanding with Christos Tzolis, in Norwich’s best counter attacking furries in the first half. 

• Teemu Pukki   6

Couple of late chances. One near post dart and strike from Milot Rashica’s cross was deflected over, before he brought the ball down in the Arsenal box in stoppage time but his shot struck a home defender.

Came in for some harsh treatment that prompted a rare prolonged protest to referee Oliver in the closing stages. 

• Christos Tzolis  7

Vibrant first half. Lovely composure and flick with the outside of the boot found Kieran Dowell to spark the first Norwich counter. Carried the fight in the 11th minute before exchanging passes with Dowell and fizzing a low cross that had no takers. 

Did not neglect his defensive duties either. Notably doing just enough to ease Takehiro Tomiyasu off-balance for a far post volley in first half stoppage time. 

City substitutes          

• Todd Cantwell (for Dowell, 62)            5

Started a slick move on the right and then popped up on the left to conjure a cross claimed by Ramsdale at his near post. 

• Milot Rashica (for Tzolis, 69)             6 

Injected some much needed dynamism to stretch the play. Ran the length of the Arsenal half to earn his side a corner in the 79th minute. 

• Adam Idah (for Rupp, 80)               n/a 

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