Everton 1-0 Arsenal: James Tarkowski scores winner in Sean Dyche’s first game

James Tarkowski scores

New manager Sean Dyche enjoyed a dream start as a much-improved Everton side stunned Premier League leaders Arsenal at a raucous Goodison Park.

Dyche was appointed last Monday following the departure of Frank Lampard, who was sacked with the team in the relegation zone.

And the hosts picked up their first victory in 11 games in all competitions courtesy of a link-up between two men who played for Dyche at Burnley.

Centre-half James Tarkowski rose at the far post to power home a header from Dwight McNeil’s corner to spark the sort of joyous scenes that have been witnessed rarely at Goodison this term.

Everton had enjoyed much the better chances in the opening period too, but striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin could not convert from the excellent Amadou Onana’s low cross and also flicked a header wide.

Arsenal were outfought for large periods and failed to find any rhythm, although January signing Leandro Trossard forced Jordan Pickford into a sharp save late on.

The Gunners were unable to find the leveller and will see their lead at the top cut to two points if champions Manchester City beat Tottenham on Sunday.

Everton show much-needed fight and grit

Thousands marched down Goodison Road before kick-off, protesting against Everton’s board and its running of the club.

But what a transformation there has been on the pitch in just five days under the experienced Dyche.

The former Burnley boss has already set about changing the mindset of a team who have been abject this season.

Writing in his matchday programme notes, Dyche asked for “hard work” and a demonstration of the “pride” of wearing the Everton shirt – and he got both.

Setting up in a 4-5-1 formation, Everton snapped into tackles and gave high-flying Arsenal no room to breathe – with Vitalii Mykolenko’s late challenge on captain Martin Odegaard in the second minute setting the tone.

The home side’s pressing and ferocious tackling was epitomised by Belgium midfielder Onana, who made more tackles – four – than any other player on the pitch, with each challenge greeted by a roar from the home fans.

Calvert-Lewin could possibly have done better with his chances but could not find the target, while Abdoulaye Doucoure – restored to the team after a falling out with Lampard had led to him being omitted – sent a free header wide.

It did not cost them though, as Tarkowski nodded in at the back post on the hour mark before wheeling off to celebrate a goal that ended a run of four consecutive home defeats with a statement win.

It was just their fourth league victory in 21 games this season, taking them out of the relegation zone by a point, but they could return to the bottom three depending on other results this weekend.

Huge setback for Arsenal

Arsenal have swept aside almost everyone put in front of them this season, but this is a major setback for Mikel Arteta and his team.

The free-flowing football that has lifted them to the top of the table was absent and they did not look like scoring after falling behind, succumbing to their second league loss of the campaign.

They had defeated Manchester United and north London rivals Tottenham with impressive performances in their previous two league games, but may well have Pep Guardiola’s City breathing down their neck by Sunday evening.

Arsenal’s performances this season have fuelled talk of a first league title since 2004, but if they fail to beat Brentford in their next game, they could be second by the time they host City on 15 February.

Eddie Nketiah wasted a presentable opening in the opening period, blazing wide, while Bukayo Saka did the same in the second half.

Deadline-day signing Jorginho came off the bench to make his debut, but the Italy international was unable to create any chances for his team-mates.

Player of the match

OnanaAmadou Onana

with an average of 8.15


  1. Squad number8Player nameOnana
    Average rating


  2. Squad number2Player nameTarkowski
    Average rating


  3. Squad number7Player nameMcNeil
    Average rating


  4. Squad number23Player nameColeman
    Average rating


  5. Squad number30Player nameCoady
    Average rating


  6. Squad number19Player nameMykolenko
    Average rating


  7. Squad number16Player nameDoucouré
    Average rating


  8. Squad number27Player nameGueye
    Average rating


  9. Squad number17Player nameIwobi
    Average rating


  10. Squad number9Player nameCalvert-Lewin
    Average rating


  11. Squad number1Player namePickford
    Average rating


  12. Squad number20Player nameMaupay
    Average rating



  1. Squad number1Player nameRamsdale
    Average rating


  2. Squad number35Player nameZinchenko
    Average rating


  3. Squad number7Player nameSaka
    Average rating


  4. Squad number12Player nameSaliba
    Average rating


  5. Squad number8Player nameØdegaard
    Average rating


  6. Squad number6Player nameGabriel Magalhães
    Average rating


  7. Squad number5Player namePartey
    Average rating


  8. Squad number34Player nameXhaka
    Average rating


  9. Squad number4Player nameWhite
    Average rating


  10. Squad number11Player nameGabriel Martinelli
    Average rating


  11. Squad number14Player nameNketiah
    Average rating


  12. Squad number19Player nameTrossard
    Average rating


  13. Squad number18Player nameTomiyasu
    Average rating


  14. Squad number20Player nameJorginho
    Average rating


  15. Squad number21Player nameFábio Vieira
    Average rating




Formation 4-5-1

  • 1PickfordBooked at 86mins
  • 23Coleman
  • 30Coady
  • 2Tarkowski
  • 19MykolenkoBooked at 63mins
  • 7McNeil
  • 16Doucouré
  • 27Gueye
  • 8OnanaBooked at 69mins
  • 17Iwobi
  • 9Calvert-LewinSubstituted forMaupayat 62′minutesBooked at 90mins


  • 4Holgate
  • 11Gray
  • 13Mina
  • 15Begovic
  • 20Maupay
  • 22Godfrey
  • 26Davies
  • 29Vinagre
  • 50Simms


Formation 4-3-3

  • 1Ramsdale
  • 4WhiteSubstituted forTomiyasuat 85′minutes
  • 12Saliba
  • 6Gabriel
  • 35ZinchenkoBooked at 90mins
  • 8ØdegaardSubstituted forFábio Vieiraat 77′minutes
  • 5ParteySubstituted forJorginhoat 59′minutes
  • 34Xhaka
  • 7Saka
  • 14Nketiah
  • 11MartinelliSubstituted forTrossardat 59′minutes


  • 3Tierney
  • 15Kiwior
  • 16Holding
  • 18Tomiyasu
  • 19Trossard
  • 20Jorginho
  • 21Fábio Vieira
  • 30Turner
  • 85Cozier-Duberry

David Coote


Match Stats

Live Text

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Match ends, Everton 1, Arsenal 0.

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