Arsenal's Laurent Koscielny was by far their best player in Newcastle win

Laurent Koscielny

Arsenal’s Laurent Koscielny was superb against Newcastle United.

Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny was the best player on the pitch as he contributed greatly to his side’s narrow 1-0 win over the struggling Newcastle United at the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners started the game brightly and dominated for the first ten minutes before the game became rather dull, allowing Newcastle the opportunity to seize control in the middle.

For long periods it looked like the Magpies had the hosts contained, yet a routine second-half corner was flicked on by Olivier Giroud and Koscienly was there to fire home from a yew yards out.

It topped off a superb performance from the commanding centre-back, and he was much more like himself following a disappointing display during the recent 4-0 defeat at Southampton.

  TacklesEffective ClearancesInterceptionsAerial Duels WonDef Duels WonBall RecoveriesAccurate PassesMins Played
Laurent Koscielny 2 3 4 4 6 6 31 90

As shown by the table provided by Opta Stats, Koscielny featured heavily as he dealt with Newcastle’s impressive forward players well with a number of key contributions.

The France international posted two tackles, three effective clearances, four interceptions, four aerial duels won, six defensive duels won and six ball recoveries over the 90 minutes.

In possession he was reliable as ever, completing 31 accurate passes as he instigated attacks from deep.

The victory helps Arsenal consolidate their position at the top, moving two points clear of Leicester City following their 0-0 draw with Bournemouth and seven points clear of rivals Tottenham Hotspur.

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for NEWCASTLE UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch