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Arteta hails Arsenal ‘spirit’ after 3-2 win over Everton seals his ‘best week’ as Gunners boss

Arsenal emerged as 3-2 winners after a hugely entertaining clash with Everton at the Emirates, the victory the third in the space of seven days for Mikel Arteta’s side.

Carlo Ancelotti’s in-form Toffees side would take the lead after less than a minute, with striker Dominic Calvert-Lewis netting a superb improvised overhead kick from a corner.

Arsenal were rocked after conceding so early, but gradually began to get a foothold in the game and drew level on 27 minute, young attacker Eddie Nketiah finishing off a fine cross from fellow academy product, Bukayo Saka.

The Gunners would then take the lead through a familiar source, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang racing clear and curling a Thierry Henry-Esque finish into the bottom corner.

Mikel Arteta’s side would once again be punished for their poor defending from set-pieces just before half-time, keeper Bernd Leno feebly allowing Richarlison’s close-range effort to squirm through his legs.

Arsenal would take the lead for the second time in the game just after the restart, Aubameyang once again proving the difference maker, the Gabon international heading home a Nicholas Pepe cross.

Leno would redeem himself with a fine second-half display and despite having to survive some hairy moments, the Gunners held on for a win that sees them move up to ninth in the Premier League table, seven points behind fourth place Chelsea.

Speaking afterwards Gunners boss Arteta was delighted with the spirit his side showed in getting over the line after a hectic week.

“The best thing is the spirit we showed after coming back from Europe – three games in seven days. And coming back after we went behind. The resilience they showed after they were absolutely shattered,” Arteta told Sky Sports.

“Sead Kolasinac had a shoulder problem. Everybody was cramping.

”We could only change two players. We had to defend very, very deep.

“Leno was really good. In the right moment he saved us.”

Not only was matchwinner Aubameyang sharp in attack, the 30-year-old also contributed in defence, and Arteta admitted his skipper is clearly the Gunners most ‘important player’.

“It was an incredible amount of work Aubameyang was doing,” Arteta added.

”Before I took over I had my questions about him but he showed his commitment. I wanted him to show if he wanted to do it and do it physically.

“Aubameyang is our most important player, no doubt the impact he has in this team. We will have to convince him to stay with us.

“Winning three games in seven games. Sure it is my best week.”

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