By Giuseppe Muro
Everton come to Emirates Stadium tonight and David Moyes side have lost just once since the turn of the year.
So what chance do the Toffees have of getting a result against Arsenal? We spoke to Dave Prentice of the Liverpool Echo to get an Everton perspective on the Premier League game.
THE STORY SO FAR
The problem they’ve got, which has been the problem all season, is that they’ve played some pretty good football but just lacked the consistency and class in their frontline. Having said that, in recent weeks they have started scoring a few more [goals]. Notably, since Jermaine Beckford has been paired with Louis Saha. They seem to have overcome that problem but now they’ve started shipping goals at the other end. It’s been a strange season because their performances haven’t really been reflected by their results.
REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL
Their better results and performances have come against the leading teams. Everton have won at Manchester City, beaten Tottenham at Goodison [Park], drawn at Anfield, come from behind to draw against Manchester United and should have beaten Chelsea on Saturday [in the FA Cup]. I wouldn’t say they fancy themselves but there will be a quiet confidence about going to the Emirates and doing a job.
David Moyes will set his team up very similarly to the way he did against Chelsea on Saturday. In recent weeks he has gone 4-4-2 with Beckford and Saha up front. It has made the game very open but Everton have played some very good stuff this season. Notably against Tottenham, they played 4-4-2 and out-footballed Tottenham. With the best will in the world, I don’t think anyone would like to take Arsenal on in a pure football match so I think he will try and put five across midfield and ask Mikel Arteta, Jack Rodwell or even Marouane Fellaini to get forward and support Saha.
THE ONE TO WATCH
Seamus Coleman is wonderful, he’s absolutely magnificent. He’s a breath of fresh air both in terms of his play and also his attitude and personality. He’s just an honest, enthusiastic young lad who is desperate to impress and desperate to learn. When he gets the ball, his first thought is to run at defences. He’s got pace and he’s direct so people hate [playing against] him. He is always improving and he has even found a bit of an eye for goal in recent weeks. He plays wide right despite being brought [to the club] as a right back. He’s been very positive this season and you would expect to see him establishing himself in that position.
Personally, I’d say they will miss [Steven Pienaar] because he is such a quality player. David Moyes, obviously trying to put a positive [spin] on it, was suggesting that he hasn’t scored this season and has only created one goal. He is suggesting that obviously his contribution wasn’t quite as great as people thought.