Saturday, 3 February 2018

Arsenal vs Everton Match Preview, Possible Lineups + Other Today's EPL Fixtures

Arsenal's form has been hit and miss all season, with more questions asked of Arsene Wenger's suitability for the job.
Arsenal vs Everton
England – Premier League
Date: Saturday, 3 February 2018
Kick-Off at 18:30 - Nigerian Time
Venue: Emirates Stadium (London).
At home, however, it has been a different story - with nine wins and two draws in their 12 games so far, and 31 goals scored in the process.

Everton's away form, meanwhile, has been abysmal - one win in 12, with five draws and six defeats being the primary reason they have struggled so much this season.

The Toffees returned to winning ways against Leicester in mid-week, but with new signings at Arsenal and Mesut Ozil tied to a new contract, confidence seems to be returning to the Emirates despite their defeat at Swansea.

Ozil, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will all want to make an impression in today's game, and Everton are at serious risk of being over-ran in the same manner they were by Tottenham in their most recent away fixture.

Anything less than a home win will be a surprise, despite Arsenal's unpredictable form - particularly given Everton's poor record away from home in this fixture.

TEAM NEWS:

Arsenal - Club-record signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could go straight into the Arsenal line-up for the match against Everton, and link back up with former Borussia Dortmund team-mate - and fellow new- signing - Henrikh Mkhitaryan. The latter was only a substitute in the mid-week defeat to Swansea but Arsene Wenger is expected to shuffle things around after that defeat. Petr Cech made a bad error in that game, but Wenger is not known to be too knee-jerk when it comes to his goalkeepers, and he is likely to retain his place. Aaron Ramsey replaced Jack Wilshere in midfield for the game in Wales, but Wilshere could return to face Everton having been in good form this season. Mohamed Elneny and Alex Iwobi appear the two most likely to make way for Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan in what would be a change of system for the Gunners. 

Everton - After scoring twice against Leicester in mid-week, Theo Walcott will hope to return to face his former team - and prove a point to Arsene Wenger, who did not start him once in the league in the first half of the season. James McCarthy's broken leg means his season is over, but Seamus Coleman returned from his own horror injury in the game against Leicester. Whether he is up to speed for two games in a week remains to be seen, however, and Jonjoe Kenny could return. Tom Davies replaced McCarthy against Leicester and is likely to continue in the middle. At the back, new loan signing Eliaquim Mangala could partner Michael Keane as Sam Allardyce continues to chop and change his centre-back pairing in search for his best combination.

TEAM FORMS:

Arsenal - While they are yet to win away since the turn of the year, Arsenal are unbeaten at home in 2018. They beat Crystal Palace 4-1 in their last home English Premier League game, while last time out at the Emirates they defeated Chelsea 2-1 to reach the Carabao Cup final. Their most recent league fixture saw them crash to a 3-1 defeat at Swansea, however, having initially been one-nil up through Nacho Monreal's goal - his second in consecutive league games.

Everton's win at home to Leicester in midweek was their first win on 2018, having started the year with defeats to Manchester United, Liverpool (in the FA Cup) and Tottenham Hotspur and a draw at home to West Brom. Their last away game was also their last trip to London, when Spurs hit four past them. Last time out, however, it was Theo Walcott’s double which sank Leicester in Wednesday's 2-1 win.

PREDICTED LINEUPS:

Arsenal (4-3-3): Cech; Bellerin, Koscielny, Mustafi, Monreal; Wilshere, Xhaka, Ozil; ubameyang, Lacazette, Mkhitaryan.

Everton (4-3-3): Pickford; Kenny, Keane, Mangala, Martina; Gueye, Davies, Sigurdsson; Walcott, Tosun, Rooney

KEY STATS:
  • Everton have not won away at Arsenal since 1996 and, despite winning their home fixture against the Gunners last season, they have won just one of the last seven English Premier League matches between the two teams as well.
  • Arsenal won the reverse fixture 5-2 back in October on a milestone day for the club - they took their Premier League goals tally beyond 1,500 in the victory, alongside scoring their 100th EPL goal against the Toffees - the first time any EPL team had netted a century against a single opponent.
  • Nacho Monreal, Mesut Ozil, Alexandre Lacazette, Alexis Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey were all on the scoresheet, while Wayne Rooney and Oumar Niasse netted Everton's two.
  • Arsenal are looking for their landmark 100th win against Everton ahead of the 198th tie between the two teams.
PREDICTION: 

Arsenal 3-0 Everton  —   Arsenal have been unpredictable this season but their home form is good and Everton’s away form is not. Expect goals, especially with Arsenal’s attacking reinforcements.

TODAY'S ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE FIXTURES IN FULL:

13:30  —   Burnley VS  Manchester City

16:00  —   AFC Bournemouth VS Stoke City

16:00  —   Brighton & Hove Albion VS West Ham United

16:00  —   Leicester City VS Swansea City

16:00  —   Manchester United VS Huddersfield Town

16:00  —   West Bromwich Albion VS Southampton

18:30  —   Arsenal VS Everton

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