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10 December 2011
• Emirates Stadium, London
Referee: H. Webb
• Attendance: 60062
R. van Persie 70'
90' + 4'
Full-time at the Emirates Stadium! Everton will be disappointed to come away with nothing, but they never really looked like causing the Arsenal backline too many issues. A moment of brilliance from Robin van Persie was enough to earn Arsene Wenger's men all three points here today.
90' + 3'
Everton youngster McAleny smashes a shot at the Arsenal goal from distance, in a style reminiscent of Wayne Rooney's first Premier League goal with the Toffees, but it flies just wide to the right of the Gunners' goal.
90' + 2'
The confidence of Robin van Persie is on display here, as the Dutchman and Rosicky link up well, before van Persie strikes from a tight angle but cannot hit the target.
Arsenal are happy to keep possession here. Although they're driving at goal on occasion, they are more than happy to be forced into wide areas or back towards their own half.
Free kick to Arsenal, as Hetinga fouls Rosicky. Aaron Ramsey takes the kick but cannot find a team mate with his cross.
Arsene Wenger bringing on some fresh legs to try and put this result beyond doubt and ensure his side do not concede in the closing stages.
Yellow Card Sylvain Distin
Walcott breaks out of defence at pace, and Distin uses his experience to nudge the England winger off the ball and earn himself a yellow card.
Another chance for Arsenal. This time it comes from a Mikel Arteta corner which finds the head of - yes, you guessed it - Robin van Persie, but the Dutchman can't direct his header on target.
And it's a double change from Moyes, with McAleny making his debut for the club. Everton must find some impetus from somewhere if they are to find a way back into this match.
It will be interesting to see how Everton respond to this. It has been a fairly equal half until a moment of sheer brilliance from van Persie and Song. Arsenal currently just casually passing the ball around trying to keep possession.
Assist Alex Song
Goal Robin van Persie
GOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAALLLL! Absolutely magical goal from Robin van Persie and Arsenal. Song receives the ball half way inside the Everton half. He casually lifts the ball over Jagielka and van Persie volleys the ball beautifully into the bottom right corner. He is now just one goal behind Thierry Henry's record number of goals in a calendar year.
Everton continue to pile the pressure on Arsenal, albeit a little muted, as many players don't seem to want to commit to an attack. Fellaini finds space on the edge of the area but smashes the ball high and wide.
Everton narrowly miss the chance to go in front here! Some great play from Baines down the left sees the ball eventually fall to Phil Neville on the edge of the area. The former Manchester United man hits a great strike which goes just over the Arsenal crossbar.
Free kick on the half-way line for Arsenal, as Heitinga commits a cheap foul. Ramsey takes the kick quickly and a through-ball is played for van Persie, who can't get there ahead of the on-rushing Tim Howard.
And yet another offside is given here, this time against Saha. Frustrating stuff for the fans, but you can't help but feel that eventually one of these runs will find a player onside and through on goal.
Free kick to Everton near the corner flag on the right wing, after Vermaelen flattens Coleman as he tries to go past him. Baines takes the kick but can't find a team-mate from his cross. Encouraging stuff for David Moyes.
Absolutely brilliant play from Theo Walcott. Weaving in and out on the edge of the area before clipping the ball past Baines and firing a powerful shot at Howard, who saves well.
Seamus Coleman is lucky to be on the pitch here. He is already on a yellow card and has made one or two questionable challenges since picking up his booking, Moyes may think about replacing him soon.
Robin van Persie tries to play in Ramsey, but the ball is just behind the young Welshman. Arsenal cannot seem to find that final ball today, but continue to threaten.
And it's a bit of a disjointed beginning to this second half, with both teams struggling to maintain a meaningful spell of possession.
And we're underway for the second half here at the Emirates!
Here is a word from Goal.com's correspondent at the Emirates Stadium, Josh Clarke: “Arsenal overwhelmingly the dominant force so far, though they are struggling to find an end product to match their superiority. Too much pitter-patter round the box for my liking. I’m sure if Robin van Persie put his foot through one from 20 yards, the deadlock will more likely be broken. Nevertheless, it’s clearly a case of Everton battening down the hatches for the second half, the Gunners have threatened relentlessly for the first 45.”
45' + 3'
Half-time at the Emirates. It's been a strong defensive display from Everton, although they have showed little sign of troubling Arsenal's goal. The Gunners will be disappointed not to go in to the break with a goal, as they have had a number of opportunities to take the lead. Arsenal 0-0 Everton.
45' + 2'
A mix up in the Arsenal defence sees the ball fall to Saha, who strikes a dipping shot from 30 yards, but can't hit the target.
Half-chance for Arsenal, as Robin van Persie tries to chip the ball into the Toffees' penalty area. It's a foot too high for Gervinho and goes out for a goal kick.
Sustained pressure from Arsenal leads to a flurry of chances. Robin van Persie takes a corner and there are shouts for handball against Jagielka. The referee waves play-on.
Yellow Card Aaron Ramsey
Although Arsenal have been creating more chances here, Everton are by no means out of this one. They keep looking to threaten Arsenal's goal every time they get a spell of possession.
Fellaini does really well to dispossess Ramsey in the away side's half. He feeds the ball to Coleman who can't quite find Hibbert down the right flank.
A fantastic 50-yard diagonal pass almost finds Theo Walcott in the Everton penalty area. Just a yard too far for the Gunners' right winger.
An Everton corner whipped in by Baines finds Fellaini at the front post. but the Belgian fails to direct his flick on target. Goal kick.
Aaron Ramsey fights off Jagielka in the visitors' box but swivels on the ball instead of taking his shot first time. The young Welshman still manages to get a shot away, but can only fire inches over the bar.
Another fantastic chance for Arsenal, as a ball over the top of the Everton defence sees Walcott and van Persie clear of the defence. However, the Dutchman was offside.
Yellow Card Seamus Coleman
Walcott does well to win a free-kick in a good area for Arsenal. Arteta squares to Vermaelan to shoot instead of taking it on himself, but the shot is charged down
And another huge chance for Arsenal. Gervinho manages to get away from the Toffees rearguard, leaving him and van Persie against on Everton defender. He squares to van Persie but the Dutchman is offside.
Chance for Arsenal! Great ball in from Walcott and he just misses the head of Robin van Persie at the front post. A warning to Everton not to give Walcott time on the ball.
Yellow Card Mikel Amatrian Arteta
Everton seeing more possession but can't find the final pass, with a couple of potential through-balls adjudged to be offside.
Arsenal starting to establish themselves in this match now, dominating possession and pressing the away side all over the pitch when they lose the ball.
A ball over the top of the Toffees' backline finds Theo Walcott in an offside position. Although replays suggest that it was a tight call.
A couple of early offsides for both teams, with the frontmen from either side just mis-timing their runs. Aside from the it's cagey at the moment, with both sides trying to get comfortable on the ball.
And we're off here at the Emirates!
Everton: Howard; Hibbert, Heitinga, Jagielka, Baines; Coleman, Neville, Fellaini, Bilyaletdinov; Cahill, Saha. Subs: Mucha, Stracqualursi, Distin, Gueye, Barkley, Vellios, McAleny.
Arsenal: Szczesny; Djourou, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Vermaelen; Arteta, Song, Ramsey; Walcott, Van Persie, Gervinho. Subs: Almunia, Rosicky, Arshavin, Frimpong, Chamakh, Benayoun, Miquel.
Kick-off is just a few minutes away, but before we get stuck into the action let's take a look at those all important line-ups.
Good afternoon and welcome to Goal.com's live coverage of today's Premier League encounter between Arsenal and Everton at the Emirates.
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