Arsenal Came from behind to defeat West Ham with a double from Lukas Podolski and a superb effort from Olivier Giroud sealed a 3-1 win over the Hammers.
But the gunners despite their win against West Ham at the Emirates on Tuesday night still have to be wary of Everton as the side take on Crystal Palace at the Goodison Park Wednesday night and a win would take them back to fourth position above Arsenal with just a point.
Roberto Martinez’s side have earned plaudits for their style of play this season but they were not at their free-flowing best on Saturday and had to fight to go home with three points. With a Wes Brown own goal at the Stadium of Light enough to seal a 1-0 victory as Everton made it seven straight wins.
Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard told the Liverpool Echo that he is certain the Toffees’ can finish strong this season and that the fight for the coveted fourth place position is on insisting Everton has got it in them what it takes to finish ahead of Arsenal.
“You don’t mind it being a bit scrappy every now and then because you almost want the confirmation that we’ve got it in us,”
“We know we can play good football but we never want to get away from that Everton fighting spirit, that ability to dig in. Games like this remind us that’s still in us which is important.
“Even at 1-0 down they kept coming because they had a lot to fight for and it was a really tough game.”
Everton had been warned by Martinez that facing Sunderland would be a hard game but, having negotiated the test, Howard believes they can now hold off the challenge of Arsenal in their remaining fixtures.
“The manager drilled into us that it would be tough,” said the goalkeeper ahead of Wednesday’s clash with Crystal Palace.
“Now we can count them on one hand. We’re going to tick the games off.
“We’re in a good mental state. We’re performing well. We feel fluid and there’s a good energy in the dressing room. We won’t feel pressure on our back from Arsenal.
“Anything can happen. There are so many ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ but if we keep fighting we’ll finish strong so hopefully that can continue.”