Arsenal’s disciplined and efficient performance against Bayern Munich in midweek has provided renewed optimism at the North London club. Confidence is flowing at the London club and the opening day defeat to West Ham seems like ages ago as they welcome Everton to the Emirates. Everton were well beaten by Manchester United last weekend in a game they lost 3-0. They face another difficult test when they travel to London to play Arsenal.
Roberto Martinez will hope his charges come up with a better performance in a game that they have not had too much success recently. The Merseyside club have won just once in the last 16 Premier League meeting between the sides with the Gunners recording nine victories in those meetings. Arsenal were starved of the ball for long periods in midweek against the German champions but Wenger will want his side to seize the initiative in this match. Arsenal ability to collapse and lose concentration is well documented and this Everton side will seek to capitalise on any such gifts. Ross Barkley and Romelu Lukaku will be the players Everton will hope turns up on the day if they are to get anything from the game.
Petr Cech has provided some much needed calmness to the Arsenal defence and already has seven clean sheets in his first 11 games. The veteran, who now has 167 clean sheets, is closing in on David James’ record of 169 clean sheets in the premier league and his recent form suggest that it is a record he is capable of beating in a matter of weeks. Olivier Giroud has found goals easy to come by in this fixture and has netted four goals in the last four meeting between the two teams. Wenger faces a selection headache and has to decide whether to bring in the French international or persist with Theo Walcott.
Aaron Ramsey suffered injury against Bayern in midweek and will be sidelined until after the next international break. Arteta is ruled out for the game against his former side after picking up an ankle injury in training. Gabriel Paulista is available for selection while Tomas Rosicky, Jack Wilshere and Danny Welbeck all have long term injuries. David Ospina is still sidelined with a shoulder injury.
Tom Cleverly and Steven Pienaar are available for selection after recovering from injuries.