Arsenal v Everton Preview

Well that was that then. 
It was a weird weekend with everything that happened, and one where football took a second place. Which was fortunate really as Man Utd gubbed us three to nothing.   
It was only our second defeat of the season so the fall out on the ethernet was a bit weird but that’s online for you. What looked like a shitter of a month on paper is proving just that with one point so far and a very tough away game to come.United took us apart with a degree of ease reserved usually for Walter Smith sides. They were in truth better all over the park and our sloppiness, particularly in defence, was punished hard. This was the same defence where we were celebrating two of our best player returning the lead up to the game. Serves us right.  
Goodison was as flat as I’ve ever seen it for a United game so it was pondered that maybe the news of Kendall passing away earlier that day had an affect on the result. I would take a guess it did. United were very good though, they’ll do well this season.
Everton are usually good at bouncing back from adverse results but the next fixture is not one that many teams go into fancying their chances. Arsenal away over recent history has not been kind to us, without a win there for approaching twenty years. To compound that they will be going into it with their tails up after a fantastic 2-0 win against Bayern Munich midweek in the Champions League. Make no mistake this is a talented Arsenal side we will be facing.So that’s the size of it. How scruffy are their fans I don’t hear you cry. Well it’s a difficult one with Arsenal because they have a varied fan base from afar and there’s a more corporate feel to it all these days, with their new stadium and executive boxes and tickets with prices that you have to harvest a kidney for. But on the whole I think if there was one word to cover their fans then the word would be “fruits”. Their fans are mainly really bad fruits.Our well-honed noses are set to sniff out kopiteism in all it’s forms and reject it. London’s top two clubs have a great-shared history but there’s a team in red with some worrying traits. While there are a few examples around the globe of kopite behaviour, it’s fortunately like the search for another Earth. For there to be the same there has to be the exact optimum conditions for life to survive, which is no different to kopiteism. Arsenal are certainly in the habitability zone but fall short on being full blown kopites. They should be utterly ashamed by association though.

Why the animosity towards Arsenal fans? Bad quegs with expensive clobber swaggering into their new stadium, every single one of them with Beats earphones hanging round their necks but not plugged into any device. Pure Oxford Tory barnets that have had forty minutes preparation time to go to the game. Sneering spoilt cockney beauts who wanted their most successful manager of all time sacked because they haven’t been able to put a photo of an Arsenal captain holding a cup as their instagram photo and then hash tag obscure references from The Art Of War with it, as though said trophy was won personally by them.

Tedious pub bantz and bragging about how many properties they own and how much they got paid last month. Loads from the Home Counties doing what I believe is a “mockney” and pretending their grandfather grew up as a chimney sweep and boxed against the Krays. It’s like giving an entire stadium a monster line of flake, they’re not there for the football, they’re there for themselves.

We do however have to be grateful for Michael Thomas, so we’re about even and will leave it at that.

Wenger hit on a formula at the end of last season that saw them go on a run and tonk Villa in one of the most one sided FA Cup Finals I’ve seen. They buzzed off us in Thailand pre season and passed the ball around Everton for fun. It was a moody beginning to the actual season for them but they’re just into their groove, the spanking of United the game before last was ominous and as I mentioned they put a very good Bayern Munich side to bed just this week. Consistency is not their friend but I reckon this current team have a little more about them than the ones who have choked in the decade before them. It pertinently must be noted that as time passes Wenger is resembling a gherkin left out in the mid day Mexican sun. I hope that with all this time-lapse technology someone can create a comparison and tweet it or whatever.

Walcott has been a big success since his transition to a bona fide striker. He’s got very intelligent movement and rapid pace, it means any team they play are not going to leave a high line thus playing into Arsenal’s hands Walcott gives Wenger a fox in the box option that he has been looking for since he threw eight million pounds at us for yet another talented scouse attacking player quite a few years ago. There’s also the option of Giroud, the big preening Pepe le Peu, who brings a physical option and is not a stranger to valuable tap ins himself.

Behind them and to the side of them is where the magic happens. Alexis Sanchez is a wonderful player, easily one of the best in the whole league right now. He is flying around any defence unfortunate to face him looking for openings and when he finds them he’s clinical, be it by assisting or finishing the half chance himself. Ozil blows hot and cold but is a genuine top European talent on the days he bothers to turn up, even if he does look like he should be sat inconspicuously on a branch and licking his own eyeballs from time to time. Ramsay brings a bit of get up and go to the mix and has more than an eye for goal – he picked up a knock against Munich so may be a doubt.

Central midfield will probably be Coquelin and Cazorla whom can move the ball around rather lovely but should also be prone to a good dose of bullying and snidery, if any of our midfield fancies it. We need to try and turn this into a ruck but that won’t be easy as their fan base have a collective meltdown and demand a penalty for touching one of their players in the centre circle. Hope the referee isn’t a shithouse but that’s a big ask.

Defence is effective with Koscielny and Mertesacker happy to dish it out, Monreal and Bellerin as pacey full backs and finally they got themselves an effective keeper in Cech.

You can see why it’s a really good team. I should be typing some brave words right now urging Everton on but that would utterly stupid as not a single player or staff member reads these words, not many Everton fans do either.

Beating Arsenal away would take some topping, like an injury time winner in front of the Kop type topping, so there’s a fairly good prize on offer. It is another benchmark to see how good we are too.

Lukaku has been beating a lonely path up front without much reward in the past couple of games. My brain isn’t astute to know what the answer is but we can speculate. I’m speculating that for some reason he plays better with Kone on the pitch. Maybe the spunk head Ivorian prince is his muse? Maybe it’s just as simple as Kone makes the ball stick and gives Lukaku space to play into. Kone is not the long-term answer, and I’m not sure he’s to be played wide but we need to stop Lukaku being so isolated as his goals are important to our happy weekends.

Barkley will again be tested with the spotlight on him against a very technical midfield, absolutely none of them have got a fine set of shoulders like the Wavertree lid so I hope he notes that and upsets a few of their crying lil bishes early on. And then proceeds to slalom around them like something off Grandstand January 1986. Naismith’s hat trick against Chelsea was boss but he’s not done much since to keep him in that left side slot, perhaps because it’s not the best position for him, perhaps because he’s not in form. Perhaps because compared to the sex of Mirallas and Deulofeu out wide he compares up like he was married to Brendan Rodgers.

There should be a cautionary tale of getting hopes up over two wingers, being that wingers are prone to inconsistency and form. The last time we had two such (potential) options out wide was twenty years ago with Limpar and Kanchelskis. I hope we find a way somehow to get them both involved but I suspect this may impact negatively in other areas of the pitch, causing us problems against different oppositions.

Enough of the dullness, just swerve playing non suited players out wide and give us that sexual width Martinez, right until the point teams start raping our flanks and we love four games on the bounce. Only then will we be satisfied and start talking up the merits of Lennon, Naismith and Kone out there. But never Samuel Eto’o.

What happened to Leon Osman anyway?

Barry and McCarthy are going to have their work cut out but are much higher rated in the cocks (for the sake of wools it means toughest) of midfield for the Premier League. This is my third mention of getting stuck on them which is a little obsessive and weird but I just hope that if we can’t beat them then we maim a few.We championed the return of Stones and Coleman last weekend and celebrated our strength in depth as Mori and Browning dropped to the bench. It was misplaced as we shipped three goals. I hope they’re a lot more tighter for this one. Howard in goal, a position for us that is only going to get more and more magnified now with each passing transfer window. And a position that costs top dough for a sure thing there.So that’s what is coming up this weekend.
A hard-to-find-the-right-words is saved for last. I’m lucky enough to remember the mid eighties. If I’m ever in a position to sadly contemplate my final moments on this mortal coil then the thing I shall choose to think of last is a team in royal blue tops with white V-necks doing all sorts of nasty stuff to oppositions. I still get the piss took out of me nowadays for coming in half cut and always watching that very same team on grainy YouTube videos.
That team was made and ran by Howard Kendall. An Everton title winning player, manager and staunch proud blue to boot. May we know those feelings again. Thank you Howard, and rest in peace.What’s our name?

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