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Everton vs Arsenal

by Jacek Staszak on Premier League

After 31 games of Premier League, if a team has had at least 60 points, it has always finished in the top four. Everton and Arsenal have 60 and 64 respectively.

Everton v Arsenal

So – who’s going to end up in Champions League next season? Arsenal has always managed to do it, but Roberto Martinez has promised it when interviewed by Everton this summer before getting the job. Both managers know that the stakes are high – Arsene Wenger has an economics degree, whilst Martinez degree in business management. Both try not to overspend and rely on their philosophy of football.

Similarities

Both try to play expansive, aesthetically pleasing game but only one will eventually prevail.

Everton is very much the in form team. They’ve won their last five Premier League games, Arsenal just one of them. The Toffees have experienced just one loss at home this season.

It’s hard to defeat Everton, especially at home. Martinez’s side play possession football, but it’s not a gung-ho type. They do rely on solid defensive foundations laid by centre-backs and defensive midfielders accompanied by two strong full backs – Seamus Coleman and Leighton Baines. Martinez has made some plans for the latter – he’d like him to play as a holding midfielder next season.

After being hit by injuries Arsenal’s form has dropped and they’re practically out of the title race this year, although Arsene Wenger said that his side still has a chance:  “For us it is an opportunity to go up forward and as well an opportunity to make a distance with Everton of course”.

Injury crisis

He will have his midfielder Aaron Ramsey back in the squad. The Welshman was a vital part of the team that lead the pack for most part of the season. Nacho Monreal should also be available, but Kieran Gibbs, Laurent Koscielny, Serge Gnabry, Mesut Ozil, Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott and Abou Diaby are definitely out. Tough season has taken its toll, but it’s not an excuse for Wenger who was accused that his training methods and the medical team are also responsible for the injury crisis.

Everton’s Ross Barkley has just played 45 minutes in last weekend’s game against Fulham, but Martinez hopes that he will be available for Sunday’s game. Phil Jagielka will be in the squad, but he has just returned to training and will sit on the bench.

Sunday’s match should be decisive in the race for the Champions League spot. If Everton will win this game, everything will be in their hands (they have one game more to play). Arsenal, on the other hand, is a veteran in those kind of run-ins. A month ago many thought this will be their season in terms of the title. Maybe now it’ll be Everton’s season and they’ll end above Arsenal?

Recent stats

Everton have won 11, drawn 3 and lost 1 of their last 15 home games, scoring an average of 1.58 goals and conceding 1.0 in their last 15 games.

Everton have won 0 and drawn 1 in their last 3 home meetings with Arsenal.

Arsenal have won 9, drawn 2 and lost 5 of their last 16 away games, scoring an average of 1.75 goals and conceding 1.16 in their last 16 games.

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