Arsenal v Everton

TEAM NEWS

Illness could prevent Arsenal’s new £56m record signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from making his debut against Everton this weekend.

Jack Wilshere is also a doubt because of sickness but Henrikh Mkhitaryan will make his first home appearance.

Everton’s Seamus Coleman could make his second start in less than a week after 10 months out with a broken leg.

Sam Allardyce says Coleman will be assessed, while loan signing Eliaquim Mangala is set to make his debut.

MOTD COMMENTATOR’S NOTES

Simon Brotherton: “Things have gone rather better for Arsenal off the pitch than on it this week.

“Their awful away form continued at Swansea on Tuesday, but for home fans there’s the prospect of a first sighting of record signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and a first home game for Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

“Mesut Ozil’s commitment to the club was also finally confirmed, with a new contract agreed at last. The only downside is they’re still light defensively.

“This game sees a quick return to familiar territory for Theo Walcott just two-and-a-half weeks after leaving the Gunners for Everton. He appears to be settling in well on Merseyside, scoring both goals in the midweek win over Leicester, and can expect a warm reception on his return.”

Twitter: @SimonBrotherton

WHAT THE MANAGERS SAY

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger on his transfer window business: “I couldn’t do everything. I wanted to do more.

“I believe we have to find an internal solution to our defensive problems, and that means everyone putting more effort in.

“But overall I am happy with the way things went in the transfer market.”

Everton manager Sam Allardyce on new loan signing Eliaquim Mangala: “Eliaquim adds power and strength to our defensive unit.

“Also, he’s naturally left-footed – we don’t have a natural left-footer in the team at the moment. Michael Keane is not bad with his left foot and Yannick Bolasie is okay, but they are not naturally left-footed.

“It gives us a little bit of balance down that left-hand side defensively.”

LAWRO’S PREDICTION

Arsenal are eight points adrift of the top four but I don’t think their hopes of making a Champions League spot through their league position are over yet.

I see them going on a run, because that is what Arsenal do.

Prediction: 2-0

Lawro’s full predictions v NFL stars Emmanuel Sanders and Josh Norman

  • Think you can do better than Lawro? Predict the score for this match and the rest of this round’s Premier League fixtures in our Predictor game.

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

  • Everton’s current run of 11 Premier League matches without a win at Arsenal is their longest against any club (D4, L7).
  • The Toffees have registered only two wins in 22 meetings in all competitions, most recently in December 2016.
  • Arsenal have scored 100 goals against Everton, the only club to do so against another Premier League team.

Arsenal

  • Arsenal have won only three of their last 11 league matches (D5, L3).
  • The Gunners began that run fourth in the table, two points ahead of fifth. Going into this weekend they are sixth, eight points adrift of fourth.
  • They have never lost a Premier League game at the Emirates Stadium in February (W17, D4).
  • The Gunners have made 11 errors leading to goals this season, the most in Europe’s top five leagues.
  • Only Watford (16) have lost more Premier League points from a winning position than Arsenal’s 15 in 2017-18.
  • Arsenal have won all eight Premier League home fixtures this season against teams below them in the table.
  • They have scored in their last 26 league games at the Emirates since a 0-0 draw against Middlesbrough in October 2016.

Everton

  • Everton’s victory over Leicester in midweek ended a seven-match winless run (D3, L4). It is their only triumph in 12 attempts against teams above them in the table.
  • The Toffees are winless in their last 27 Premier League away fixtures against clubs that finished in the top six last season.
  • Everton have won a league-high 13 points from a losing position this campaign.
  • Sam Allardyce is winless in 13 Premier League away games at Arsenal, losing the last eight in a row.
  • This match is Allardyce’s 500th in the Premier League, making him just the fifth manager to reach this milestone. Arsene Wenger won his 500th match in charge, Harry Redknapp drew, and Alex Ferguson and David Moyes both lost.
SAM’s verdict
Most probable score: 2-0 Probability of draw: 16%
Probability of home win: 76% Probability of away win: 8%

SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) is a super-computer created by @ProfIanMcHale at the University of Liverpool that is used to predict the outcome of football matches.