Why Everton game can be HUGE for Arsenal season

This was far from being a perfect performance from Arsenal away to Everton. Ramsey and Chamberlain forgot their shooting boots, Mertesacker looked well off the pace, Ozil should have had his sunglasses on and the Gunners just could not quite click.

Dead and buried with 10 minutes to go though, Arsenal showed some real character and ground out the point we deserved. In fact if you consider that their second goal should not have stood, we were unlucky. These things happen though and we are probably more happy with the result than Everton.

But I think the players can take a lot of positives from the game. We stopped a big rival getting one over on us, while answering the question of whether we can put last season’s away day blues behind us. Don’t forget that the Gunners are not up to speed yet, in fact there is a lot more to come, but we were much more solid, in general, and a lot less naive after going behind.

The Alexis experiment did not work today, but he will get more chances and do better. At least Giroud stepped up and should now be a weapon for us again. Campbell impressed in his short spell and Jack Wilshere continued to show that he is getting back to what he was.

Now just go and beat Besiktas on Wednesday and we can really start to look forward to the rest of the season.

Tags Giroud Ramsey Wilshere


  1. I don’t understand when people say sanchez wasn’t working. He worked tirelessly when everton were fresh and our midfield couldn’t get him great passes to finish. he came back to defend brilliantly as well so that was a plus. i think he will be lethal if the service is there and that means ozil playing through the middle not on the left like he was. Players need to play their natural positions to give the maximum output.

        1. Hi bro, are you counting emirates cup’s goals?? Sanogo 4goals so far then. Giroud had a great 45 minutes performance so far in the season on my eyes. Which was yesterday not basiktas and not palace

    1. Is it so easy to write thing off after one game?
      Giroud does not score, assist and hold up ball effectively for one game then he is completely shite, useless, lamp post, etc …He is no where be the top striker we need but he can be a super-sub, a plan B that people cried out at the time when we had Van Persie.
      Sanchez does not have any shot on goal for 45 minutes and it becomes he cannot play forward – his run draw defender and give space to Ox a few times. Come on it is not FIFA where you can put just any player with space up front and it works.

      So when Sanchez come in for Giroud up front, we have to switch to different playing style – something similar to what Liverpool did last season with SAS. It does not just happen overnight, the players need to gel and understand each other to make that one-two right. He was just at England for a few weeks, give him at least half a season to know team-mate and for Wenger to come up with the best tactics which utilise his talent. I saw enough potential in the first half that with time he can be the top striker we craved for. Suarez scored only 11 goals in his 2nd season at Liverpool so be realistic in your expectation and don’t give our star player unnecessary pressure

      1. Completely agree. Judging a player in one game is shit. Giroud is a perfect plan B.
        Need a top striker like Cavani.
        Just worried about Cesc form and comparing with Ozil’s form considering the fact that we turned down to sign him for 27 mil. Cesc is dominating the mid field consecutively in both the games. How Ozil picks up and dominate the midfiled as he is no doubt better dan cesc/. May be we can see the real ozil when- he is more match fit, Wlacott is back and sanchesz become more match fit

        1. “Need a top striker like Cavani”. Well, we need a top striker but Cavani is not a top striker. He would command the fee of a top striker and the salary of a top striker but is not in that category.

          1. Top strikers along with the conditions that we want (young, relatively cheap, efficient with good movement and team play) are not “available” in the market..we need to make one and thats exactly what arsene is thinking

        2. off topic, if there were no constraints, I would ideally start Cesc ahead of Ozil. Who is a better player is debatable. Ozil needs certain types of players around him to flourish. Cesc during his time even made Diaby and Eboue look good in front of goal. May be as an arsenal supporter, I have seen too much of Cesc and less Ozil. I do not doubt Ozil’s play making abilities but somehow I feel cesc reads the game faster, scores more goals and has a lot more fight in him than Ozil who gives the impression of giving up “whenever things get tough” but having said that in the real world, the Cesc ship has sailed!
          ps: btw did anyone notice the instance when ozil lost the ball in midfield and was more interested in pointing something out to another player rather than running back and stopping the counter attack? This is the kind of stupidity I hate in him!

          1. But I am sure cesc doesnt play in the same team as ozil? So why start him ahead of ozil?

            OT: I wonder what odds you would have got on chamakh downing and carton cole all scoring in the same match?

            1. @Atid: I was responding to sunny13 above. What I meant was I am of the opinion that we should have brought back Cesc and played him cam instead of Ozil. Given the team we have Cesc is a better fit than Ozil

              1. @Atid. Yes the Cesc ship is gone… I agree no point in discussing … Now dat he joined our rival chelsea, but let say, Wenger spend 27 mil and had signed Cesc, so whom would you have played. I know in real world this question is senseless but still . ?

          2. What did we win when we had Cesc, RVP, Nasri, Clichy, Song, ALL playing together in the team.
            I am sick of people complaining that we should have brought Cesc back. Great player for us, but, we have moved on. After all HE chose to leave.
            RVP, when fit, was a top top striker, but, he chose to go to Utd rather than trust Wenger to build the team once the finances improved.
            Same with Samir, and Song couldn,t book a flight fast enough to Spain.
            Please stop reminiscing on what we had, that won FA, and support the team that we have NOW, and that hopefully will go on to add to the FA Cup and Community Shield tropheys, that we never won with those mentioned and seemingly for some still, the prodigal sons.

    2. No worry fans. Sanchez is still getting to the mix of things. It will take some time. He just need to adapt the araenal way of play. He has the physicality to sustain in this league. Within 2-3 Games we will see a lethal alexis sanchez

    3. Wenger’s team selection was questionable.When will Campbell get his chance?After he becomes 60 Years.

      1. Team selection (and substitutions) have been questionable all 3 games this year. The problem is Wenger is trying so hard to accommodate Wilshere (who does not warrant a place in the starting 11) that others are played out of position.

    4. if your saying players need to play in their natural positions, then Alexis needs to play on the RW…

      1. Wish people would stop this mantra about AS17’s “natural position” and repeating something that is not true. Check out his history. There is one reason he played out on the RW at Barca: Messi. There is one reason why it is extremely unlikely that he will be playing RW at Arsenal: Walcott. His most dynamic and eye-catching performances have been as an inside right forward with the freedom to play centrally. He has all the attributes to play centrally; the spontaneity to produce something out of nothing, the ability to run behind and stretch defences, excellent dribbling in 1v1 situations and sharp finishing. The problem Wenger has to resolve is whether he can play there alone or needs to be operating as a second striker. The problem Alexis has to overcome is getting used to playing with his back to goal – he has spent the greater part of his playing life facing the goal. But he has the skills to do that and adapt – witness his lighting turns that leave nearly all floundering. Whatever the outcome he needs time. Absolutely loved his cajoling energy and darting around yesterday – notwithstanding he never had ONE touch in the opponent’s penalty area!

  2. Sanchez did not work? False. The 1st Sanchez striker experiment did not work? Not this time – but it is only one game.

      1. Not only that but Sanchez was one of our best players in the first half. It was not his fault he couldn’t get the ball where he was in a position to pose a threat but he did more in the first half than every player on the pitch other than the Ox.

  3. Won’t be easy for any team to play at Goodison this year so the point is a good result as far I see it. The Arsenal machine is taking a little longer to click through the gears. Players are building their fitness and understanding with each other.
    I wouldn’t be overly concerned right now.
    We will see a much better performance against Besiktas…albeit without Ramsey.
    Hope Campbell will get a run out there soon and Diaby since he’s injury-free at the moment 🙂

    Good recovery Gunners – well done!

      1. Wenger was at least 10 minutes late in bringing on Campbell and Santi. He often waits too long to make substitutions.

    1. first match back for the germans, too, no preseason for them, tuf first match on the road for them…

  4. Wenger tactically was beaten yet again by Martinez unfortunately. Firstly, Ozil shouldn’t have played LW, we needed a player who could track back defensively against Lukaku and Coleman. Either he should play CAM or not play at all if he isn’t ready. Also, he should give OX the job of tracking back in the big games as he has the youth and fitness therefore, he should of played in Ozils position today. Finally, rather than taking Alexis off, put him up against Baines who’s on a yellow card. He tormented him in the England vs Chile game. Good point, but worrying defensively, can’t afford to go behind in big games. CDM needed ASAP as well as a better mentality in big games. #COYG

    1. Completely agree. Ox should have started at lw an Ozil should have played at CAM and we should
      have rested Wilshere since Ramsey is suspended next UCL qualifier.

      1. Every strategy has advantage and flaw. Creative player like Carzola or Ozil on left wing allow them to move inside, and initiate our attack in the middle, our attacking style focus more in the middle not the flank.
        Why no one see that Man City who wins the championship by putting Silva and Nasri on the both wings – both are slow, creative AM and bad defensively.
        And want to follow MU under Moyes to put 2 pure winger on the wings.

        Lastly we happen to have more good AM than good Winger so we need a strategy to utilise them.
        What I think is wrong in last match is Wilshere for all his energy would move to the left more and help out Ozil with the defend.

        1. Stupid analysis comparing City and us,they have a powerful midfield of Toure,Fernandinho they are able to cope with having lightweight players who have no pace on the wings because their full backs are better Zabaleta and Kolarov are great at overlapping!

  5. We played poorly in the first half. We need a quality striker so that Giroud can be our super sub.
    Also we need a CDM. We would not have been bullied by Everton if we had top quality CDM.
    We have only 2 CB. Wenger please don’t screw us this time.

    1. Isn’t Carvalho around £30m? isn’t that a little expensive for a unproven 22 year old?
      I would prefer Khedira who’s at the top of his game, proven at the highest level and is a champion. Will only cost us 20m too.

      1. Khedira is injury prone that’s why im hesitating. Carvalho is also a CDM unlike Khedira who
        is box to box but can play well at CDM. Well Carvalho’s price may be too high but his wages
        will be significantly less than Khedira.

        1. How many of carvalho’s 31 top flight league games have you actually watched?

          Khedira is not a box to box, khedira is a world class midfielder who can play where ever his manager asks him to play. 2014 world cup winner, 2014 champions league winner that is the class we need NOT a 22 year old unproven over hyped and massively over priced player from a 2nd rate league.

  6. if we had signed a striker, DM, LW and a centreback….

    we would not have draw…..2 points dropped

    1. Easy said then done. We cannot just sign any DM, LW and center back did we? It seems you never appreciate the players we got.

      More deadwood if we sign such as Tiote (DM), Townsend(LW), Dawson(CB). Can buy any time, their clubs will quickly grab our money and run away.

      We will only improve if we sign top players Khedira, Reus, Hummels – huge wage, high transfer fee, club does not want to sell, strong competition from other top clubs.

    2. Expert analysis as ever there buddy – if you have a problem throw money at it; the unbeatable, fool proof anthem for the world.

  7. It is amazing to me that the worst referee’s continue on each year. The AR who blew the Everton offside call for the 2nd goal is ALWAYS the worst. The camera is always zooming in to show his face when he makes the inevitable bad call – and in one game last season he blew 2 offside calls for the same team ensuring the wrong team earned 3 points.

    He must really have connections with powerful people to keep his job. Always this same AR.

    1. 2nd goal was offside but u have to agree we were terrible in first half. We gave the ball away too much and didn’t create anything.

  8. I hope this game is a sign of good things to come this season. We showed great determination to get this point away. However, Everton is the wrong team to try to experiment with tactics against in my opinion. I think Leicester should have been the first team Wenger tries Sanchez up front against. Distin and Jagielka are both very big and very strong, and we saw in the first half that Sanchez just doesn’t have the size to compete when crosses are coming in. Perhaps playing low crosses would have been a better tactic, but he’s still very new to the league. I’m not the biggest Giroud fan or critic, but he changed the game significantly when he came in. I think the much maligned Davidnz on this site is absolutely correct; he’s been saying that despite Giroud’s flaws, he gives 100% each and every game, and that’s so true. Giroud has the heart, he just lacks the talent to go with it. I also thought our midfield was pretty poor today. I really hope this sort of new 4-3-3 isn’t just a way to get Wilshere in the starting 11, because although he’s been better than last season I still would prefer a midfield three of Flamini, Ramsey, and Ozil. Obviously I’d love to have a legitimate DM in there who has the physical presence to stop counters and dictate the tempo, but as of right now those three would be my starters. But also, Ramsey has been sub par early this season. He has come up with two vital goals, but other than those he hasn’t been good. Why Ozil started on the left is beyond me; we needed real pace on both wings against Everton because everyone knows how good Coleman and Baines are. Sanchez may turn out to be an effective striker, but his ability to track back and win balls defensively would have been much better suited on the wing today. Overall I think we can be happy with the draw, but I think if Wenger hadn’t tweaked the lineup that we could have won, regardless of that offside goal.

    1. i dont think it was much of an experiment, giroud was awful in istanbul, this was as much to motivate as to see how sanchez fits, the key to sanchez working was ox’s speed and ozil, but the 3 did not click…

      1. 4 games and giroud has scored in 3 of them. All 3 from the bench, that is where I believe giroud is most effective. I said yesterday and I will say again today our top 7 attackers will score 100 goals this season and yesterday they grabbed another 2. Ramsey, giroud, sanchez, ozil, podolski, Walcott and cazorla have now scored 7 already and 4 of those players have yet to get off the mark.

        Great attitude yesterday great team spirit, not losing was important but winning on Wednesday is more important.

    2. but the thing is he does have the talent.. he just has extreme weaknesses to his game that people constantly put under a magnifying glass that will never change.
      A lot of the criticisms he received last season were due to a perceived drop in tempo and him slowing the attacks down. He was often left isolated with the majority of midfielders preferring to patiently build attacks from deep and due to Giroud’s lack of any threat in behind and Theo’s absence to stretch defenses, if teams pressed us to any effect we were stifled. When Giroud came on our midfield runners in Ramsey, Wilshere and Ox (he was operating pretty deep) came into the attack a lot more and Giroud’s incisive one-touch passing helped us increase the tempo from our disjointed first half and our attacks were faster giving Everton less time to organize.

      I believe Sanchez will be an effective option at striker playing in the 4-2-3-1 with a no10 of Ozil or Cazorla’s quality behind him but i can’t see it working within the 4-3-3 unless the game is extremely open… In my opinion the recent change in tactic has been in place to utilize the developing threat of Ox, Wilshere and Ramsey who are all very capable of scoring goals from midfield. Sanchez’s direct, penetrating threat can all be utilized on the wing to devastating effect when he finds his rhythm, though when Giroud plays back to goal he is exceptional at bringing the multiple dangers around him into play and will chip in his fair share of goals while doing so.

  9. A new CDM is a must. Flamini is old and not good enough, arteta is NOT a dmf, coquelin is inexperienced and diaby may be good enough but….. U know why.

  10. you still didnt give a reason why Wilshere should be in the starting XI. Even if we play a 4-1-4-1, why should Wilshere be ahead of Cazorla, Ozil, even Rosicky in midfield? Ramsey has always performed well with Cazorla and Ozil as his midfield partner, never Wilshere. Why are we trying to force them to play well together when we can just bench him and start Ozil or Cazorla in midfield with Ramsey? This is about Wenger sacrificing our better players to make Wilshere improve, but theres no guarantee it will work, and in the end we could just end up losing points, and Ramsey could lose form.

    1. Exactly. Let Wilshere sit on the bench for a while. Use him as a sub. When the injuries inevitably come, he’ll get his chance to start.

  11. time the eff out, the germans play their first match since the world cup final on the road at pissed off everton, pissed we finished 4th above them, we go down by 2, one offsides, and have the grit to score two in the final 10″, we took a point at goodison when we did not play well, to me, thats the sign of a winner, when you get outplayed and still find a way to take a point… giroud always plays better when he is punished not starting, he aint no messi, but he aint no bentner either…

    1. i dont think anyone is really pissed, its just obvious there is a lot of room for improvement. Most people would take a point from that match and be satisfied with it, so good result, but performance and tactics were not so good.

  12. A week or so left in the transfer window. I really can’t see us buying more than one player, maybe two if we are lucky.
    Khedira and Manolas is all that I can realistically hope for with Poldi being sold.
    There is also a bit of noise about Wellbeck but I can’t see us buying three more players.
    If I know Wenger well enough he’ll just buy Manolas and try Chambers at DM.
    If he has changed a bit since we clearly have more money he might also get Khedira. A midfield of Ramsey-Khedira and Ozil should be fun to watch.

    1. that’s wildly speculative. CL qualification is a must for most top players, especially in such a tight league where in no way are we guaranteed to be in it next season.
      Wenger plays his cards very close to his chest and for all we know there are a few signings resting on what happens this week not just from our perspective but from an incoming player’s perspective as well. If you were a player what would be the point of signing a 3-5 year contract a week before you may potentially have a big negotiating tool in the club not playing CL football? in a weeks time that could be the difference in getting 10-20 extra K per week..

      just a few things to think about in case you get anxious in the next few days.. haha!

  13. We need a new CDM regardless of formation. How does the 4-4-1 (some call it 4-3-3) mask the need for a new CDM? So far, the only thing the new formation has done is make Ramsey and Ozil less effective so Wilshere (who does not deserve to start in any formation) can be more comfortable. But the new formation has not improved Wilshere’s performance at all, he’s been poor all 3 games.

  14. I suggest wenger to give A.Diaby a chance and train him as a D. Midfielder. He has the body abd his passes are more than 90% accurate and he xan track the ball back. In yesterday’s game against Everton, it was tense but finally satsfying. The ref didnt impress me at all, setting Lukaku free fro a faul against Per and again giving an offside goal was disgusting!!! Its our right to watch a free and fairly officiated game. This kind of poor officiating kills the morale of players and their commitment to the game. This kind of refs should not be allowed to officiate any epl games.

  15. The writer of this article is not aware Ramsey scored against Everton.

    ………………….. “Ramsey and Chamberlain forgot their shooting boots” ………………………

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