Arsenal vs Everton: Last call for European football

It’s crunch time in the battle for European football. This weekend’s game could be the last opportunity for Arsenal and Everton to remain relevant in the top six race.

When: Friday, April 23, 20:00 GMT

How to watch: Sky Sports Main Event

Follow this game live via our score centre

Best Bets

Draw at 12/5 (Betfair)

Correct Score 1-1 at 6/1 (bet365)

Nicolas Pepe to score anytime at 49/20 (Unibet)

Arsenal celebrate their goal against Fulham
Arsenal celebrate their goal against Fulham

Let's not beat around the bush - this has been a terrible season for the Gunners.

Mikel Arteta's men are on course to set a new club record for the worst league finish since the 1994/95 season.

The club is nine points adrift of the Champions League places and seven away from the top six. And if that wasn't bad enough, the misfiring Gunners are coming into this weekend on the back of a 1-1 draw with 18th placed Fulham.

Their one saving grace, however, could be Everton's worsening form. Carlo Ancelotti's men have been slipping down the standings following a five-match winless run in the Premier League.

But then again, the Toffees cannot be underestimated. The club boasts the fourth best away form this season and they certainly have the tools to beat the Gunners.

Last Three Premier League Matches

Everton 2-1 Arsenal (December 19, 2020)

Everton came out victorious when the two clubs met earlier this season.

All three goals came in an entertaining opening half as the Toffees secured the win.

Rob Holding's own goal gave Everton an early lead before Nicolas Pepe equalised from the penalty spot.

Yerry Mina then put the hosts back in front with a goal just before the interval. Arsenal had over 70% possession in the second half but failed to take any points back to London.

Arsenal 3-2 Everton (February 23, 2020)

On their last trip to the Emirates, Everton suffered a narrow 3-2 defeat to the Gunners.

The thrilling encounter began with the Toffees taking the lead in the opening minute of the contest. Dominic Calvert-Lewin opened the scoring before two quick goals  from Eddie Nketiah and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang put the Gunners in front.

Everton's Richarlison levelled the score just before the interval however, Aubameyang grabbed his second shortly after the restart.

Ancelotti's men were unable to find another goal as the three points stayed at the Emirates.

Everton 0-0 Arsenal (December 21, 2019)

Believe it or not, but this fixture has only produced one draw in seven years.

That faithful day came in December of 2019 as Everton failed to land a single shot on target.

Arsenal enjoyed more possession but they themselves only managed two strikes on goal.

In the end, the near 40,000 crowd went home rather disappointed following the goalless draw.

Last ten head-to-head games

Arsenal wins: 6

Draws: 1

Everton wins: 3

Arsenal goals: 22

Everton goals: 11

Eight games to save the season

The 2020/21 campaign will not go down as a memorable one for Arsenal supporters. However, the club does have an opportunity claw back some pride.

There are eight games remaining for Mikel Arteta's men, two of which are against Villarreal in the Europa League semi-final. In the Premier League, meanwhile, the Gunners will face Newcastle, West Brom, ChelseaCrystal Palace and Brighton.

Tough season for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta
Tough season for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta

It's still possible for Arsenal to bag a top six finish but it is paramount that they win most - if not all - of their remaining league games.

Should Arteta bag a respectable league finish and qualify for the final of the Europa League, this may build a strong platform from which the Gunners can build on next season. (Though we did say the same about the FA Cup last season, and look how that turned out…)

Everton fading… fast

Just a couple of months ago, Everton were considered to be one of the contenders for a top four finish. A few weeks later, that ambition changed to the top six. Today, it's not even certain that they'll finish in the top ten.

Carlo Ancelotti's men are in the midst of a five-match winless run in the Premier League - a run that has seen them slip to eight in the standings.

We can qualify for Europe if we are brave, insists Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti
We can qualify for Europe if we are brave, insists Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti

The Toffees are currently six points off the top four but only five points above of 11th placed Aston Villa.

The remaining six games of the season will determine whether Everton play in Europe next season or not. However, if they are to keep that ambition alive, that winless run has to come to an end soon… preferably this weekend at the Emirates.

Goalscorer bets

With Aubameyang and Lazacette unlikely to feature, the attacking options for Arsenal are limited.

Nevertheless, the goalscoring bet is to back Nicolas Pepe to get amongst the goals.

Arsenal's Nicolas Pepe
Arsenal's Nicolas Pepe

The Arsenal forward has got two goals in his last three appearances. What's more, he's already scored past Jordan Pickford when they two teams met earlier in the season.

At 49/20, he's certainly worth a shot to score anytime.

READ MORE: Six clubs reportedly chasing talented Norwich defender; international boss registers Spurs interest

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