Arsene Wenger was delighted after Arsenal defeated Everton 2-1 on Saturday (24 October) to go top of the Premier League table at least for the next 24 hours, and could end the weekend on top depending on the results at Old Trafford, where Manchester United take on local rivals City. The Gunners had to dig deep to come away with the three points with the Toffees creating a few chances of their own, as they looked for their first win at the Emirates Stadium.
The north London club were in a buoyant mood following their midweek Champions League win over Bayern Munich, and Wenger was proud to see his team maintain their focus and see out the game, despite the Merseyside club coming close to scoring an equalizer on a couple of occasions. The Gunners had their fair share of chances to take the game beyond Everton, but Tim Howard and the crossbar made sure the game remained on edge.
The French manager did reveal slight disappointment regarding the manner in which Arsenal conceded the goal, which gave Everton some hope of salvaging at least a point from the game. Ross Barkley scored though a deflection off Gabriel, just one minute before the interval, after the 12-time FA Cup champions were caught on the counter-attack.
"We had a massive game on Tuesday night and after that it is a good test for your squad and the hand off to your players. I think we played with the right focus and desire," Wenger is quoted as saying on Arsenal's official site.
"We were a bit unfortunate in the first half we got caught with one minute to go so it was 2-1 and created a bit of insecurity in the squad. In the second half we continued to dominate but could not get the third goal and then we were a bit exposed on the counter-attack once or twice. Romelu Lukaku had the header on the bar and Petr Cech made a great save with very little time to go and that got us three massive points."