Everton – Arsenal: Yerry Mina joined a Rob Holding own goal in producing a 2-1 win for Everton over reeling Arsenal at Goodison Park on Saturday.
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Nicolas Pepe converted an Ainsley Maitland-Niles-won penalty for Arsenal, now winless in seven-straight Premier League matches, a run which includes five losses and has led to 14 total points and 15th place on the table.
Everton goes second on the table, five points back of Liverpool, though Spurs or Leicester will pass them on Sunday.
Three things we learned from Everton – Arsenal
1. Gunners out of ideas: The club’s answer without Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang? The Gunners are still looking for that. Outside of Pepe and Maitland-Niles on the right, there was nothing cooking for Arsenal. Eddie Nketiah was kept under 30 touches over 76 minutes before being swapped for Alexandre Lacazette, who was a bit more lively but still not a true threat. It’s not so much Arsenal’s eight losses this season — okay it is very much about that — rather the Gunners’ status as boring and unglued (Dani Ceballos could’ve become Arsenal’s eighth sending off of the year on another day).
2. Sigurdsson seizes the day: James Rodriguez’s latest injury has asked more out of 31-year-old Toffees veteran Gylfi Sigurdsson, and the Icelandic midfielder has produced a mini-revival. Sigurdsson’s gone from full-time starter to “mostly” starter to half-and-half over the past three seasons, but this was his third start in seven days and Everton has beaten Chelsea 1-0, Leicester 2-0, and Arsenal 2-1. Sigurdsson was a big part of the Chelsea and Arsenal wins and did just fine against the Foxes. Big time.
3. Carlo Magnifico: Carlo Ancelotti’s men took a 2-1 lead and it never looked like the Toffees were in danger of giving it up despite Arsenal carrying possession. Everton was well-drilled in its own third and Ancelotti should be very happy with his men allowing zip-zero to a slumping side.
Man of the Match: Mina
Passed extremely well and left few gaps at the back in addition to his status as the match-winner.
Everton – Arsenal recap
The teams traded first-half goals and more than a few dicey challenges In a game which kept growing in animosity
There was a question as to who would produce the goals will playmakers absent from both side in the forms of Everton’s James Rodriguez and Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Calvert-Lewin proved a threat, his pressure leading to the game’s first goal and forcing a tremendous 45th-minute save out of Bernd Leno that became Mina’s header of a Sigurdsson corner to make it 2-1.
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Arsenal scored in between, Pepe converted a sloppy penalty given by Tom Davies for a chop of Ainsley Maitland-Niles.
The Gunners looked better after halftime, Jordan Pickford unable to corral a Willian cross and seeing an Arsenal shot bound off the cross bar.
Very late danger arrived from a great cross absent receiver followed by a very nice Pickford save.