Four days after beating Leicester City at The King Power Stadium, Mikel Arteta’s players are back in action against Everton at The Emirates. It’s our game in hand, a chance to go five points clear of Man City and fifteen points ahead of Totts in fourth place.
Everton are without Dominic Calvert-Lewin, James Garner, Nathan Patterson and Andros Townsend.
Thomas Partey is unlikely to start, despite being fit but it’s ok because in Jorginho, we have a plan b, a plan b which is working quite well. So far at least. Another plan b we witnessed for the first time at the weekend was Leandro Trossard playing up front instead of Eddie Nketiah. I think that move worked rather well too, for Gabriel Martinelli as well as Trossard. I bet Brendan Rogers wasn’t expecting that. Will Mikel Arteta do the same tonight? Who knows.
When discussing what his starting line-up may look like tonight and knowing what his best eleven is, Mikel Arteta said:
We assess that situation every single day. The fact [is] we have options now – we have players coming back from injury giving us alternatives, which is going to be crucial. Players can’t maintain the same level for 10 months – it’s just impossible. We need to change and we have to generate alternatives and be more unpredictable for opponents sometimes as well. We have those options now.
Just Mo Elneny and Gabriel Jesus are on the injury list now and the latter must be very close to returning to training. Emile Smith Rowe and Jakub Kiwior both played 45 minutes for the under 21’s on Monday night which can only be good for their fitness. Especially as the Europa League fixtures return next week.
Only two league fixtures take place tonight, the other being Liverpool v Wolves. The rest are FA Cup fixtures which include both Tottenham and Man Utd having to play Sheffield Utd and West Ham respectively. The further both go in this competition, City too who won last night, the bigger strain it’ll have on their respective squads, especially as all three are still involved in European football. This weekend, Man Utd travel to Liverpool, Newcastle play City at the Etihad and Totts go to Wolves. Arsenal are at home.
Anyway, I don’t care what Mikel Arteta said about just making sure his team plays better against Everton than they did at Goodison Park, I hope we batter Everton good and proper. I hope we gain revenge in a convincing manner. I hope referee Michael Oliver, his assistants Stuart Burt, Simon Bennett, fourth official David Coote and VAR Tony Harrington along with his sidekick James Mainwaring treat both sets of players the same.
Form wise, after the loss to Everton away from hope, the VAR cockup at Brentford, the home defeat to Man City and the awful first half against Aston Villa, Arsenal have won the last two games, both of which were away from home and potential banana skins. Now we have two back to back fixtures at The Emirates so we need to make the home advantage count.
Away from home, Everton have been pretty bad. Awful even, as they’ve won just two of their last 28 League games on the road. 19 of them have been defeats meaning they’ve picked up just 13 out of a possible 84 points. This season, they’ve won just one away fixture away from Goodison Park and that was back on the 1st October against Southampton.
They might need the points to avoid relegation but we need them to help ensure we’re playing Champions League football next season. At least….
Catch up in the comments.
Good day Rico.
The very experienced Michael Oliver is the man in the middle this evening, probably the best of a pretty poor bunch of so called “elite” Premiership referees.
Let’s hope there are no fake “clear and obvious errors” nor incorrectly ruled offside calls for the ever increasing number of official numpties to argue over…and get wrong!
A level playing field is all we can ask for, will we get one? I’m a cynic, pigs might fly.
Good read rico, I’m a little more confident now rather than hearing earlier on Sky about Arteta’s record against Dyche. I agree it would be lovely to batter them.
I look forward to copious amounts of head injuries as we are breaking ,Lots of time wasting ten men behind the ball and a lot of sideways passing . It worked for him a couple of weeks ago and I doubt that he will change his tactics tonight.
As usual Saka will get roughed up whilst both he and Martinelli or Trossard will get double marked and Tarkovski and Coady will be too strong for Nketiah which means a high speed start with an early goal should upset Dyche’s plans and then they will have to come out and we can batter them.
Yep, stray hands trying to gouge, and the commentators saying, ‘just a natural movement keeping an opponent at arms length’.
Hi All, thanks again Rico.
There were a few I hopes in there Rico . LOL . But I’m with you all the way !
Horrible team and I HOPE we smash them.
How wrong is it that we are all more worried about the Ref doing his job these days than much else ?
Does anyone remember the Halcyon days when we had a ref and two linesmen to run the game? We all relied on the radio commentary and the classified Saturday evening papers to tell us what went on. Unless, of course, you attended the match in person then if you were tall enough you could actually see what was happening, that is if you were quick enough, there were no replays on the big screens.
Mind you their were “mistakes” made just the same, I remember a grainy photo in the Evening Standard which clearly showed a linesman flagging for offside as Arsenal conceded the winning goal in a game, but the ref totally ignored it.
Plus sa change, plus sa meme chose. 😕
I see James Garner is out of tonight’s game, what a shame, I loved him in The Rockford Files. 😕
Evening guys, thanks Andrew.
There is Mike, it’s all I have as far as the officials go..
Arsenal XI: Ramsdale, White, Gabriel, Saka, Odegaard, Martinelli, Saliba, Trossard, Jorginho, Xhaka, Zinchenko.
Subs: Turner, Tierney, Partey, Smith Rowe, Nketiah, Kiwior, Holding, Tomiyasu, Vieira.
Everton XI: Pickford, Tarkowski, Keane, McNeil, Onana, Doucoure, Iwobi, Mykolenko, Maupay, Coleman, Gueye.
Subs: Begovic, Holgate, Gray, Mina, Godfrey, Davies, Vinagre, Coady, Simms.
Ramsdale, White, Saliba, Gabriel, Zinchenko, Jorginho, Odegaard, Xhaka, Martinelli, Trossard, Saka.
Wow Cicero , those were the days ! The Rockford Files, Petrocelli , Cannon and the Streets of San Francisco to name a few .
Lets hope we don’t let Maupay wind us up this evening……..Nasty S##t
Was worried that we had had one shot, Everton three (on the break). But what finishing from our two wingers on our next two chances😃
Are you watching it on-line Andrew ? So bloody frustrating not seeing what’s going on.
Didn’t sound at all good up until the goal .Were we really that bad ?
Not bad, just unable to penetrate packed defence and Everton chasing everything as if there lived depended on it. Ref and linesman gave offside for second. But you could see ball and Martinelli level as it was poked forward. Thank goodness for VAR 😃😃😃
Partey on half time
Not like VAR to do us any favours ! Maybe they’re embarrassed.
Amazing control now, but trying to walk it in rather than get 4 or 5. Oh there’s the 4th. Passing is something rose now. It’s a stuffing!
Smith-Rowe and Tierney on😃
Great result. Could have been double figures by the end. 😆
Difficult first half but brilliant second half from the boys. Everton are such a horrible team.
They may be a horrible team but with a little luck we won’t have to face them again for a season or two.
Four goals, clean sheet, three points, lead extended to five points. J A D A T O. 🔔🔔🔔🔔 😉
Poetic Justice. Playing 4-5-1, with 7 defensive minded players and still get trashed.
Just watched the replay, as other have said a difficult first half, nice assist from Saka for the second goal, and better still we kept looking for more goal than just excepting 2 nil lead is good enough.
The only annoying thing is the guy in the stands with that drum, I wish someone would shove it up his ass. it reminds me of those stupid plastic trumpets.
There have always been people that set out to be “ULTRAS ” and live in reflected glory , The Herd many years ago , AFTV , and Red Action , Black scarves and now The Ashburton Army who like the others will fade away eventually.
Unless there have been changes in the season ticket arrangements and with so many Arsenal sites complaining that they can’t get tickets how come this lot seem to have the same section every game unless it’s by arrangement with the club.
Up until 40 minutes things were as predicted , Onana held his head 3 times and Saka got his attention but we kept working the ball out wide and eventually it paid off and a fine hit to the roof of the net and then a tight VAR decision and it was all over.
3 more points on Saturday and we are clear by 5 with 12 to go unless in the early match the “Toon Army can derail City a bit more .
Happy days .
We are five clear Potter. 😆
I quite like the drums etc, adds a bit of atmosphere. Mind you, if I was stood next to the person banging it I’d probably not be enjoying the din…
New post up now