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Everton 2-1 Arsenal: Instant reaction | Toffees up to second with a third straight win

The Blue boys are on the rise

Everton v Arsenal - Premier League

And it’s three!

Yerry Mina’s header secured a nervy win against Arsenal FC to lift the Toffees up to second in the Premier League with a third straight victory.

Rob Holding’s own goal put Everton ahead only for Nicolas Pepe’s penalty to level midway through the first half.

Mina then met Gylfi Sigurdsson’s corner just before the break to head home what would prove to be the winner.

Everton made one outfield change from the win at Leicester City, with Tom Davies coming in for the injured Allan. Andre Gomes, who came off the bench at the King Power, missed out with a knock. Jordan Pickford came back into the side for Robin Olsen too.

The first opportunity of the game came from Michael Keane, who fired in an optimistic 25-yard effort that flashed just wide.

Yes, you read that right.

The Toffees went ahead on 22 minutes when Holding deflected Calvert-Lewin’s header beyond Bernd Leno.

Everton v Arsenal - Premier League

The Gunners had offered little at that stage, though Eddie Nketiah flashed a shot wide when in space inside the area.

Arsenal did eventfully level, though it was thanks to some sloppy play from Davies, who clumsily fouled Ainsley Maitland-Niles after the Arsenal full-back had nicked the ball ahead of him. Nicolas Pepe stepped up and sent Jordan Pickford the wrong way.

Everton continued to push forward, however, with Gylfi Sigurdsson firing a free-kick into the wall before Calvert-Lewin had a left-footed effort superbly tipped over by Leno.

From the resulting corner, just as the first half ticked into stoppage-time, Mina met the ball with a near post run and buried his header beyond Leno for his second goal of the season.

Everton v Arsenal - Premier League Photo by Jon Super - Pool/Getty Images

Arsenal began the second half brightly and, to be frank, were all over Everton for the first 20 minutes.

The Toffees were fortunate when Pickford fumbled yet another cross into the path of David Luiz, with his effort on goal taking a deflection before smacking the inside of the post.

Godfrey, a centre-back by trade remember, eased the pressure by putting the afterburners on and surging down the left flank, with his cross just ahead of Calvert-Lewin.

Everton v Arsenal - Premier League Photo by Jon Super - Pool/Getty Images

Richarlison then broke clear down the left but couldn’t fund Iwobi with his cut back.

Arsenal had plenty of possession but did little with it, Pepe and Willian sending shots from distance well over.

There were a few nervy moments in stoppage-time when Maitland-Niles sent a cross flashing across goal.

Buyako Saka then had a close range effort saved by Pickford as things all got a bit desperate.

The final whistle was blown moments later though, as Everton’s festive resurgence continues.