Everton v Arsenal – Preview, Predictions and Best Bets
3 December 2021
Everton host Arsenal at Goodison Park on Monday night. The Toffees are desperate for a win after a dire run of form that has seen pressure mount on Rafa Benitez. Arsenal are playing well but lost 3-2 at Old Trafford in their last match. Everton are eight matches without a victory and have a plethora of injuries to contend with. The Toffees have won their last two matches against Arsenal.
Benitez is fighting for his job after a run of eight matches without a win with six losses. Having started so well with 13 points from his first six matches, injuries have hit the squad hard. The coach has not had the answers.
They have lost four times without scoring in their last seven matches with Dominic Calvert-Lewin out injured. The run has seen a 5-2 home loss to Watford (having led 2-1) and a meek surrender to lose 3-0 at Man City. A 1-0 loss at Brentford followed before a 4-1 home thumping in the Merseyside derby to Liverpool.
Everton Team News
The side’s injuries woes are not getting any better, just yet. Yerry Mina is absent in defence but at least Mason Holgate is back from suspension to give another option. Tom Davies and Andre Gomes miss out in midfield whilst the key one is that Dominic Calvert-Lewin is still absent.
Benitez may use Richarlison as a false nine because Salomon Rondon has looked slow and ineffective. Anthony Gordon or Alex Iwobi would come into the side in that case on the flank. It is highly unlikely that the coach will do anything inventive such as using a back three or playing Holgae in midfield.
Everton are very structured and unexciting under Benitez. His side will work hard and close off angles but they won’t press high or show much creativity.
In their current form, he would take a draw for sure. Another home loss and the fans could really turn on him – he may even lose his job if the defeat is heavy.
The Gunners have been doing well with seven wins and two draws in their last 11 matches. They have lost to all of the top teams though but have been good at beating the teams below them in the table. A fine 2-0 win at Leicester was followed by a 1-0 home win against Watford and then a 2-0 home win against Newcastle.
Their last match saw a 3-2 loss at Old Trafford. They have been beaten by Man City, Chelsea and Liverpool this season too but have tended to beat sides of the level of Everton.
Arsenal Team News
Arsenal are still without Granit Xhaka in midfield. Albert Sambi Lokonga will surely be recalled in preference to Mohamed Elneny. Bukayo Saka was only fit enough to play as a substitute at Old Trafford but he could start this one. Gabriel Martinelli would probably make way.
Nuno Tavares may continue to start with Kieran Tierney left on the bench, a surprise decision.
Arsenal will play to dominate this match and respond to Thursday’s defeat to Man Utd. Arteta will go all out to win the match.
With no distractions in midweek, all their focus and motivation can be on this match.
Everton have lost 6 of their last 7 PL matches
Everton have lost to nil in 4 of their last 7 PL matches
The Toffees have conceded 15 goals in their last 6 matches
Arsenal have lost 2 of their last 11 PL matches (W7, D2)
Arsenal have kept 6 clean sheets in their last 11 away PL matches
Arsenal have lost their last 2 matches to Everton
The hosts are in dire form right now but will see this as a chance to take something and get their season going again. Arsenal have struggled to score goals this season but have a good away defensive record. A draw could be a good bet for this one but Arsenal look great value at 2.15.
Best Bet: Arsenal win at 2.15