Leeds vs Arsenal result: Player ratings as Nicolas Pepe sent off

Gunners held on after the winger’s mindless red card in the second half

Tom Kershaw
Sunday 22 November 2020 18:46 GMT
(Getty Images)

Leeds United were denied victory by the woodwork at Elland Road as Arsenal escaped with a draw despite Nicolas Pepe’s sending off.

Marcelo Bielsa’s side were already in control of the match before the winger’s senseless headbutt on Ezgjan Alioski saw Arsenal reduced to 10-men in the second half. 

Leeds came desperately close to a winner, with Patrick Bamford, Rodrigo and Rafinha all striking the woodwork, but luck wouldn’t quite fall their way, with Bernd Leno producing a pair of outstanding saves.

The result leaves Arsenal languishing in 11th, while Leeds are 14th after a performance that in truth deserved three points. 

Here are our player ratings: 


Meslier - 6: Was rarely troubled before making a brilliant save to deny Saka. Showed no signs of frailty despite Arsenal’s attempts to intimidate him at corners.

Ayling - 6: Handled the danger of Willian with ease in the first half. Missed a great chance to score in the second before being substituted.

Kock - 5: Defended well but drove forwards and attempted killer passes that allowed Arsenal to breathe again. 

Cooper - 6: Was very strong in defence, making a great last-ditch challenge to deny Aubameyang on the break late on.

Alioski - 6: The undisputed winner of a duel with Pepe, stifling his threat throughout before effectively goading the winger into getting sent off. 

Phillips - 7: Dictated the pace at the base of midfield, guarded the defence well and was always composed as he returned from a shoulder injury 

Klick - 6: Another consummate performance in the centre of the pitch as Leeds outplayed Arsenal at their own passing game.

Dallas - 6: Found lots of space in front of Arsenal’s back four, carried the ball well, and saw a brilliant effort tipped over the bar by Leno.

Rafinha - 7: An impressive performance from the new signing, who was dangerous cutting inside, hitting the post and setting up Ayling for a wonderful chance in the second half.

Harrison - 6: Attacked well and got into dangerous positions but didn’t have quite the same impact as Rafinha on the opposite flank. 

Bamford - 6: Wasn’t at his electric best, missing one tricky chance in the first half, but always worked hard. Was desperately unlucky to see his header hit the woodwork late on.

Nicolas Pepe is sent off in the second half
Nicolas Pepe is sent off in the second half (Getty Images)


Leno - 7: A brilliant save in the first half kept Arsenal in the game before another from Dallas that had the German flying at full-stretch. 

Bellerin - 6: Was solid if unspectacular, limiting his breaks forward due to the pressure Arsenal were under. One brilliant run, though, came so close to setting up Saka for a smash-and-grab winner late on.

Holding - 5: Dealt with Leeds’ aerial threat well as crosses came in. Lost Bamford on a couple of occasions.

Gabriel - 6: A solid performance under the circumstances, with Arsenal penned back for much of the second half.

Tierney - 6: Found it difficult to contain the threat of Rafinha on occasion but drove forwards well and energised his teammates as the game descended into a war of attrition.

Xhaka - 5: Struggled to contain the threat of Leeds’ midfield three, who were already running the game before Pepe’s red card. Allowed Rodrigo to cut inside on his left foot twice in the second half in moves that almost led to a goal.

Ceballos - 6: Made a few bright turns to try and add some impetus in the first half and pressed well.

Pepe - 3: Sent off in the second half for a mindless and completely unnecessary headbutt, and did little to force a breakthrough prior to that. 

Willock - 5: Tried hard throughout, a much more dynamic presence in Arsenal’s midfield, but was unable to frighten Leeds’ defence.

Willian - 5: Had little impact in the first half, handled well by Ayling, and was substituted at half time.

Aubameyang - 5: Rarely managed to make an impression on the game, despite starting in his favoured central role.  

This weekend get a £10 free bet with Betfair, when you bet £10 on a Same Game Multi on the Premier League. Terms: Min £10 Same Game Multi bet on any EPL match this Fri - Sun. Free bet valid for 72 hours, awarded at bet settlement. Excludes cashed out bets. T&Cs apply.

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