Sam Allardyce Reveals Plans Showing How Everton Will Beat 'Defensively Weak' Arsenal

Everton manager Sam Allardyce believes Arsenal are defensively weak and their tendency to commit players going forward will leave counter-attacking opportunities aplenty for his team when they visit the Emirates Stadium on Saturday (February 3).

Arsene Wenger's Arsenal have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last seven Premier League matches and were punished for some glaring defensive errors in a 3-1 defeat by Swansea City on Tuesday.

"I always felt defensively they are weak," Allardyce said on Friday. "If we break out with some quality forward passes, then we can create some good counter-attacking opportunities.

"Swansea managed to get a result against them but the Emirates is a different kettle of fish. It's about nullifying the strengths of Arsenal.

"Arsenal's attacking force is something you have to manage, even though they haven't scored as many goals this year as they have in recent years at this stage of the season."

Theo Walcott is one of the Everton players Allardyce could use on the break, with the forward set to play against Arsenal for the first time since leaving the club last month.

The 28-year-old England international has made a good start at his new stomping grounds, contributing an assist in Everton's 1-1 draw against West Bromwich Albion before scoring twice in a 2-1 victory over Leicester City on Wednesday.

Sam Allardyce
Sam Allardyce, right, at the Boleyn Ground, London, October 6, 2012. Allardyce says he knows how to beat Arsenal. Shaun Botterill/Getty

Allardyce expects Walcott to improve further and build a partnership with fullback Seamus Coleman, who made a return to the starting lineup against Leicester following 10 months out of action with a double leg break.

"Theo has seen a lot of Seamus and Seamus has seen a lot of Theo over the years. From a distance they know each other's games very well," the manager said.

"He's [Theo] got an opportunity to be a key player at Everton now. He played 30-plus games last season and scored 19 goals. Hopefully, he can have as good a performance at the Emirates as he did Wednesday night."

At Arsenal, meanwhile, Arsene Wenger has suggested he may unleash £56 million signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for his debut against Everton, despite him recovering from illness.

"He [Aubameyang] started [training] yesterday but wasn't completely well. I will see with the medical department," Wenger said.

"He is a typical striker with great pace and a good ratio between games played and goals scored. He is a team player."