Secret to Arsenal's poor form at Everton unveiled as Mikel Arteta plans first win in six years


Arsenal return to Premier League action this weekend after the frustrating interruption to their momentum by the international break after a dramatic victory against Manchester United. Declan Rice and Gabriel Jesus ensured that the Gunners would be in high spirits ahead of their next clash - one which according to history is a very difficult one despite what first impressions might say.

Look at the last five times Arsenal have travelled to Goodison Park to face Everton and the one thing they all have in common is the lack of three points for the visiting side. Yes, Arsenal have failed to beat the Toffees at their home ground since 2017.

Just under six years ago on October 22, Arsenal arrived with Arsene Wenger taking charge of his 400th Premier League away game. Goals from Nacho Monreal, Mesut Ozil, Alexandre Lacazette, Aaron Ramsey and Alexis Sanchez allowed the Gunners to turn around a deficit conceded early on to Wayne Rooney.

The following five games however all ended in four losses and a draw. Last season, Sean Dyche’s first game in charge delivered a new manager bounce as a physical Everton side who looked destined for relegation outfought Mikel Arteta’s title-challenging ball-players.

Idrissa Gueye, Abdoulaye Doucoure and Amadou Onana formed a formidable midfield trio that broke up the Gunners’ flow and a James Tarkowski goal from a cross was enough to give the home side an unlikely yet somewhat traditional three points against Arsenal in Merseyside. Traditional because of the prior four visits from north London.

The season before again saw an Arsenal team aiming for much higher heights than Everton, who had again been poor. Rafael Benitez was the coach and despite Martin Odegaard's help taking the lead before half-time, late goals from Richarlison and a stunning Demarai Gray strike in the 90th minute handed Everton all three points yet again.

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Another two crosses led to the downfall in December 2020 with Carlo Ancelotti’s then-Everton side securing a 2-1 win. An own goal from Rob Holding and a header from Yery Mina from yet another corner the difference.

With Mikel Arteta and the aforementioned Ancelotti watching on from the stands ahead of both their appointments in December 2019, both sides played out a drab 0-0 draw. Despite the soon-to-be head coach taking over for the following game, Arteta has yet to better Freddie Ljungberg’s point.

Under Unai Emery, and the final defeat to discuss, and guess how the Gunners conceded in this 1-0 defeat? Times up and yes you’re right, from a cross… of sorts.

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Lucas Digne’s long throw wasn’t dealt with by David Luiz and the follow-up header from Dominic Calvert-Lewin deflected into the path of Phil Jagielka, who poked in from close range. Arsenal offered little in the game but again it’s clear what’s happening is a trend.

Set pieces form the bedrock of Everton’s success at home to Arsenal and the worrying sign is these corners, throw-ins and free-kicks remain an issue. Against Fulham Arsenal came unstuck from a corner and conceded late, losing two extra points.

Nottingham Forest broke from Arsenal’s own corner to make the end of the opening day 2-1 win very dicey indeed. While at Crystal Palace there were frailties in the box.

Gabriel Magalhaes surely has to start this game for one, as the Brazilian offers the height needed. There is arguably an argument for Kai Havertz to start, despite plenty of calls for him to be dropped with his verticality a benefit from these plays.

In attack, Arsenal need to take their chances. Things have been clicking in this dominant side that have only improved over the past three-plus years with Arteta and a win here is due - fingers crossed it comes.

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