History says Toffees will remain stuck at bogey side Arsenal
Arsenal (FA Cup title chances of 3/1) have won eight of their last 13 against Everton in all competitions – losing none – and are odds-on 4/5 favourites for victory again in this quarter-final tie.
The Toffees travel to north London in the hope of overturning their dire form away to the Gunners, as they look to win their first FA Cup since 1995. They are third-favourites at 13/2 to go all the way, but past statistics show just why the Merseysiders face a monstrous task.
Everton have not won in their last 19 trips to Arsenal, the last one coming way back in 1996, when a late Andrei Kanchelskis winner saw off their hosts 2-1 at Highbury. Back the Blues at 14/1 for the same result or 7/2 for a victory.
Recent history, however, shows results have been far closer between the two sides. All their last three head-to-heads have ended in draws, and the match is priced at 5/2 to go to a replay. In the four games prior to that, there was just one goal that separated them – Arsenal won them all – and you can back them to win 1-0 or 2-1 at 13/2 and 15/2 respectively.
Roberto Martinez goes into this battle as the holder of the trophy after his former Wigan Athletic side came out surprise victors against Manchester City last year at Wembley. The Spaniard is bidding to become the first manager in history to win back-to-back FA Cups with two different clubs.
Arsenal’s Premier League title odds have drifted to 20/1 in recent weeks and, with their Champions League hopes fading too following their 2-1 first leg defeat, it now looks as if their best shout for silverware is the world’s oldest football knockout competition.
Lukas Podolski could be the man to fire them into the semis, as the German has managed four goals in as many FA Cup games, and can be backed at 5/4 to score again at anytime. Olivier Giroud, meanwhile is priced at 6/5 for the same market.
There is a long injury news list from both sides, with Jack Wilshere definitely out for Arsenal after breaking a bone in his foot against Denmark in England’s recent friendly. While Laurent Koscielny, Nacho Monreal and Kim Kallstrom – who is still waiting for his debut – are all doubts. Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey and Abou Diaby remain absent.
For Everton, Phil Jagielka is a major doubt, while loanee Lacina Traore, Bryan Oviedo, Darren Gibson and Arouna Kone are all out. There is good news, however, that Romelu Lukaku is in line to start after coming on and scoring in the club’s last game against West Ham. Back the Belgian at 7/4 to net anytime.
Roberto Martinez’s new side (2 wins) do boast a better FA Cup record against the Gunners (1), though, with the last battle being a 2-0 Toffees victory way back in 1981. Both sides have fantastic FA Cup pedigree, as between the two they have won 15 FA Cups in total, with Arsenal winning two thirds of those.