MIKEL ARTETA is not the first Arsenal manager with a cross to bear – but he is the first in a while to bear crosses.
The Gunners’ 3-2 victory over Everton continued their resurgence under the Spaniard.
They remain the only club in Europe’s top five leagues not to have been beaten in 2020.
The football is not only faster and more determined than it was under his predecessor Unai Emery and in the final couple of seasons of Arsene Wenger’s reign, it is also more direct.
One of Arsenal’s biggest problems and frustrations was that they always appeared to want to walk the ball into the net.
Every goal, it seemed, had to be perfect.
Every time they got in behind an opponents’ defence they either passed or dribbled it back. The number of goals and points it must have cost them down the years.
But there has been a noticeable difference under Arteta, with more balls into the box and when possible, at the earliest opportunity – and it is paying off.
Two of the Gunners goals against the Toffees came from crosses – and delicious they both were too.
Sub Bukayo Saka’s precise ball in for Eddie Nketiah to make it 1-1 with the simplest of side-foot volleys was a thing of pure beauty.
The 18-year-old is making a name for himself as one of the best deliverers in the game.
That was his TENTH assist of the season in all competitions – more than any other teen in the Premier League.
When you have a player with a talent like that it is only right you should try to make the most of, and Arteta and Arsenal are doing just that.
And on the opposite right flank Nicholas Pepe set up Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s header that made it 3-2 seconds after the break with another excellent and early centre.
In Aubameyang, Arsenal have a centre-forward hungry for goals. He is a beast who needs feeding and you do not do that by tippying and tappying the ball around the box trying to create an opening through
the eye of a needle.
Arteta realises this and has improved Arsenal’s service from wide areas.
All he needs to do now is teach his stars how to defend crosses better.
This post written by Jack Figg originally appeared on Football news - transfers, fixtures, scores, pictures | The Sun. Read the full post here.