Arsenal – Everton: Fruitless Chasers Cliché Their Campaigns (0-1)
A match that stood symbol for both teams' domestic campaign. The hosts' buildup continued to lack the desired result, as Arsenal offered very little end product or balance. Though Everton tinkered, another ugly win continues to keep them in contention for European football next season.
Tactical analysis and match report by Joel Parker.
Arsenal and Everton last met with both of these teams at different ends of the stick. Now going into the final bout of Premier League action, just three points separated two mid-table sides, both in need of cohesive and effective structures.
Attention on league form has derailed for Arsenal, whose focus is transfixed on the Europa League competition. Rookie manager Mikel Arteta may have ridden through the December skids, but his team have relapsed on a number of occasions. Their passing framework has remained the same, with a heavy focus on the left side of the attack, but additions to the number ten position have helped fill the void in other areas.
Everton’s trust in Carlo Ancelotti has remained untouched since he came in, even though the drab form post-February has seen them slide out of the Champions League race. Just three wins in their last ten Premier League games, prior to this game, have seen the worst of their buildup play come to the forefront unless James Rodríguez entered the scene. However, a win away to Arsenal would break another hoodoo under Ancelotti’s first full season at Everton, who had already picked up results at Tottenham and Liverpool earlier in the campaign.
Mikel Arteta made six changes, from the team that drew against Fulham, without Alexandre . . .