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Everton v. Arsenal


Goodison Park



Once again football gives a break from the most frustrating transfer in history. I envy the people that don't get too involved in these ordeals, as it is causing my to start pulling out my hair every time I log onto my computer.

Wednesday Arsenal travels northwest to the blue half of Merseyside to take on an Everton team that is literally done to its bare bones and in the attacking department, one could argue they are even missing some bones in their exposed skeletal system. This being considered, their defense held up brilliantly in both trips to the unparalleled, mammoth atmosphere that is Anfield. Arsenal will have trouble breaking down Jagielka and Lescott, who are in the form of their life.

Vital Quotes:

Arsene is ruminating over his centre back options. "Gallas is likely to be involved tomorrow," said Wenger. "I have not picked the team yet but he will be with us of course.

"It will be at the expense of who it will be. That depends on the games and what kind of opposition we have.'

Wenger was also full of praised of Everton's stand in striker, Tim Cahill. "He's a striker now and they are doing well," said the Frenchman. "I think they are on a similar run to ours and that's why it will be a very decisive game tomorrow.

"He's the kind of guy who likes to come from deep and he is good in the air and can always come up with a goal."

The Boss also commentated on the title race. 'We are in a strong position in the Premier League, the Champions League and the FA Cup - so let's take advantage of that and let people talk.

'Our job is to focus on what we want to achieve. We got fair criticism this year, but we have overcome that and we are now hungrier than ever. It is a good opportunity to show that on Wednesday.'

Everton Team News:

As stated above Everton are missing many key players. Arteta has a 50-50 shot of playing a part after missing the second match at Anfield with a rib injury. Saha, Vaughn, and Yakubu are all out. Fellaini will return from suspension fresh and ready to go for this one.

Player to watch: Steven Pienaar.

After watching this South African on several occasions, I admire his talent and ability. On the wing, he cuts in and can place a pass as good as anybody. Look for him to cause Arsenal trouble in this one.

Arsenal Team News:

Nothing new to report here, except that Wenger plans to use Gallas instead of one of the starters at Cardiff. I expect Toure to be dropped to the bench, further hampering his thriving relationship with Billy G.

Wenger has set a date for Eduardo's return, but unfortunately his competitive debut will not be with Arsenal. Instead he will line up with Croatia before he joins his first team Arsenal mates on the Emirates pitch. Rosicky, Cesc, and Walcott are all still out.

Possible Starting XI: Almunia, Sagna, Gallas, Djourou, Clichy, Eboue, Diaby, Denilson, Nasri, van Persie, Adebayor

Player to watch: Denilson

He was praised by Arsene last week, then was rested in the FA Cup against Cardiff on Sunday. I see him having a good game tomorrow as he has needed a rest for a while now.

Match Facts & Stats

Home and away

League (inc PL): Everton 54 wins, Arsenal 85, Draws 36

Prem: Everton 5 wins, Arsenal 21, Draws 7

at Everton only

League (inc PL): Everton 38 wins, Arsenal 26, Draws 23

Prem: Everton 4 wins, Arsenal 7, Draws 5

Sagna will make his 50th start in an Arsenal shirt.

Arsenal have beat Everton three times in a row in the Premier League.

Arsenal is undefeated in eight EPL games.

Ref Watch:

Andre Marriner will be the head official for this tie. He has managed 15 matches this season brandishing 4 reds and 56 yellows, giving him an even four card per game average.

Match Prediction:

Honestly I cannot see Everton causing us much problems in the attacking facet of the game, but their defense will be very stingy. Not more than one goal will separate these sides. 1-0 or 2-1 to the Arsenal.

Next Fixtures:

31/1 (Sat)- West Ham (H)- Premier League

3/2 (Tue)- Cardiff City(H)- FA Cup

8/2 (Sun)- Tottenham (A)- Premier League

Writer:Brice Coffer
Date:Tuesday January 27 2009
Time: 4:56PM

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"but unfortunately his competitive debut will not be with Arsenal" -- yes it will be, as the Croatia game is a friendly.
27/01/2009 17:13:00
To me friendlies are still first team competitive International games, but maybe I should of said initial first team game
27/01/2009 17:18:00
I hope that's American dry humour re Toure's thriving relationship with Gallas!
27/01/2009 17:29:00
Yes the 'hampering a thriving relationship' was irony lol
27/01/2009 17:38:00
Don't share your optimism, I can see Everton taking all the points as they score many headed goals and our defence is not programmed to defend high balls at all in fact I think they get a maximum club fine if they try to.
27/01/2009 17:39:00
But we can score goals. You forget that for some reason.
27/01/2009 18:13:00
If we have Felli and Arteta back I think we'll win. We may not have strikers but with Cahill, Arteta, Fellaini and Pienaar I'd still back us to score, take any of them out the equation however and we'll lose or draw at best - If Castillo plays we'll lose by a couple. We're looking quite solid at the moment so we should be ok at the back, so long as Howard remembers he has feet for this game. I'd go with 2-0 to us if Mikel and Fellaini play, 1-2 to your lot if one of them misses out, and 0-4 to your lot if Castillo plays.
27/01/2009 18:13:00
"I think they get a maximum club fine if they try to." -- LOL!! Wouldn't surprise me. I'm trying not to think about this game because I can see us easily losing it. Everton are just too defensively strong and we are woeful at breaking down teams like that. Yes, we've improved defensively but we're still making stupid errors and Everton know how to nick a goal, often a very good one. Best I can hope for is a draw.
27/01/2009 18:23:00
a bit annoying its a midweek game as i would of been up for this one. Dont really fancy taking time off to go to liverpool for a late one getting back at 3am.
27/01/2009 18:38:00
also this game has draw written all over it
27/01/2009 18:39:00
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