Leon Osman has accused his former club, Everton, of lacking intensity against Arsenal.
Everton were outplayed by Arsenal at Goodison Park on Sunday. Despite only losing to a 1-0 scoreline, the Toffees were by far the second best team. The Gunners dominated possession, whilst the home side failed to carve out even a single clear cut goalscoring opportunity.
Sean Dyche’s side have endured a dreadful start to the new Premier League season. They have just one point on the board, and have failed to score in four of their five matches so far.
The Toffees need to turn things around very quickly, and discover a cutting edge, if they’re to stand any chance of avoiding yet another desperate relegation scrap this season.
Leon Osman, who spent sixteen years with the club as a player, making 433 appearances, was less than impressed by what he saw from Everton against the north London club.
Speaking on Match of the Day 2, Osman said, “Everton don’t actually show any intensity. They want to just drop off, they want Arsenal to have the ball. They don’t put any pressure on…Goodison Park is an intense place to play football, when the home team are on form, the crowd want to get involved and they don’t allow the opposition midfield to feel comfortable.”
“Yet today, look how passive Everton are as a team. Declan Rice won’t believe he’s come to Goodison Park and had this much time on the ball. That story happened over and over today, and I thought Everton were miles off it.”
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Declan Rice was certainly able to dominate the midfield zone on Sunday. Despite the presence of Amadou Onana, Abdoulaye Doucoure, and Idrissa Gueye, Everton weren’t able to establish any meaningful possession or even turn the match into a more physical battle which would likely have suited them better.
Whilst the Toffees defended well for large periods, they were far too happy to allow the Gunners to build up attack after attack, without ever really threatening to launch a counter attack.
The atmosphere at Goodison Park was extremely, and uncharacteristically, subdued. Change and inspiration are desperately needed to breathe some new life and belief into this ailing club.
Given the financial situation at Everton, and the fact that a new stadium is on the way, relegation from the Premier League would be a catastrophe. The Merseyside outfit must find another level to their play, whether that’s with Dyche at the helm or not.