Everton 2-1 Arsenal: Demarai Gray stoppage-time goal earns victory for Rafael Benitez's men

1 month ago 26
Martin OdegaardMartin Odegaard scored his third goal of the season from Kieran Tierney's cross

Demarai Gray's superb injury-time strike earned Everton a first win in nine games to end a bruising week with a stunning comeback against Arsenal.

After a week in which the hosts were thumped by Liverpool and director of football Marcel Brands left the club, Rafael Benitez's team responded with a much-improved display that showed the character and resilience fans were looking for.

Richarlison had brought Everton level with 10 minutes of normal time remaining after Martin Odegaard scored the game's opener from Kieran Tierney's cross in first-half stoppage time.

That the winner came after Richarlison had also had two goals ruled out for offside by the video assistant referee before getting the equaliser will only have added to the home fans' delight.

The scenes at the final whistle were a complete turnaround from last Wednesday, when the mood turned ugly after a 4-1 defeat by their city rivals.

Victory lifts Everton to 12th in the table, eight points above the relegation zone.

Gray proves cut-price talisman again

Few fans can have expected such a performance after recent showings - had Everton failed to win this would have been their worst run of form since 1994.

Instead it was reminiscent of the club's early season form when they chalked up successive comeback wins at home and climbed to fourth.

And it was the perfect response to dozens of fans who left their seats after 27 minutes in protest about how the club is being run, with the timing a reference to the club's 27-year wait for a trophy.

The result also vindicated Benitez's insistence that the club would return to winning ways once injured players returned.

In keeping with their success earlier in the season, it was Gray who was Everton's most dangerous player, but he was aided by Richarlison, who showed great perseverance to score at the third time of asking.

His header in a poor first half, moments before Odegaard scored for Arsenal, was clearly offside but the frustration for the Brazilian and the 35,000 Everton fans inside a raucous Goodison Park was palpable when a second goal was ruled out because his toe was inches beyond the Arsenal defensive line.

When his goal eventually came, it changed the mood among a set of fans who have been angered by a familiar run of form under majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri, despite the British-Iranian spending close to £500m over the past six years.

But there was further delight to come when Gray found the top corner for his fifth goal of the season.

Having arrived for only £1.7m in the summer, he is proving to be a cut-price talisman.

More to follow.

Player of the match

GrayDemarai Gray

with an average of 8.08

Everton

Squad number11Player nameGray

Squad number7Player nameRicharlison

Squad number16Player nameDoucouré

Squad number23Player nameColeman

Squad number21Player nameAndré Gomes

Squad number6Player nameAllan

Squad number5Player nameKeane

Squad number24Player nameGordon

Squad number14Player nameTownsend

Squad number22Player nameGodfrey

Squad number1Player namePickford

Squad number4Player nameHolgate

Squad number13Player nameMina

Squad number17Player nameIwobi

Arsenal

Squad number3Player nameTierney

Squad number8Player nameØdegaard

Squad number32Player nameRamsdale

Squad number18Player nameTomiyasu

Squad number7Player nameSaka

Squad number4Player nameWhite

Squad number6Player nameGabriel Magalhães

Squad number35Player nameGabriel Martinelli

Squad number34Player nameXhaka

Squad number5Player namePartey

Squad number9Player nameLacazette

Squad number20Player nameNuno Tavares

Squad number30Player nameNketiah

Squad number14Player nameAubameyang

Line-ups

Everton

Formation 4-4-1-1

1Pickford23Coleman13MinaSubstituted forHolgateat 31'minutes5Keane22GodfreyBooked at 51mins24GordonSubstituted forIwobiat 87'minutes16Doucouré6Allan11GrayBooked at 90mins14TownsendSubstituted forAndré Gomesat 66'minutes7Richarlison

Substitutes

2Kenny4Holgate8Delph15Begovic17Iwobi20Tosun21André Gomes25Gbamin32Branthwaite

Arsenal

Formation 4-2-3-1

32Ramsdale18Tomiyasu4White6Gabriel3TierneySubstituted forTavaresat 65'minutes5Partey34XhakaBooked at 63mins7Saka8ØdegaardBooked at 74mins35MartinelliSubstituted forNketiahat 71'minutes9LacazetteSubstituted forAubameyangat 85'minutes

Substitutes

14Aubameyang16Holding17Cédric Soares19Pépé20Tavares23Sambi Lokonga25Elneny30Nketiah33Okonkwo

Referee:Mike Dean

Attendance:38,906

Live Text

Match ends, Everton 2, Arsenal 1.

Second Half ends, Everton 2, Arsenal 1.

Attempt missed. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Eddie Nketiah.

Attempt saved. Alex Iwobi (Everton) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Richarlison.

Attempt blocked. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Martin Ødegaard with a cross.

Foul by Thomas Partey (Arsenal).

Richarlison (Everton) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Demarai Gray (Everton) is shown the yellow card for excessive celebration.

Goal! Everton 2, Arsenal 1. Demarai Gray (Everton) right footed shot from outside the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by André Gomes.

Attempt blocked. Martin Ødegaard (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Eddie Nketiah.

Attempt saved. Abdoulaye Doucouré (Everton) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Substitution, Everton. Alex Iwobi replaces Anthony Gordon.

Foul by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal).

Mason Holgate (Everton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Bukayo Saka (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Takehiro Tomiyasu.

Substitution, Arsenal. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang replaces Alexandre Lacazette.

Eddie Nketiah (Arsenal) hits the left post with a header from the left side of the six yard box. Assisted by Bukayo Saka with a cross.

Attempt blocked. Martin Ødegaard (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Eddie Nketiah.

Goal! Everton 1, Arsenal 1. Richarlison (Everton) header from the centre of the box to the top left corner.

Attempt saved. Demarai Gray (Everton) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

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