Tweet
ArsenalBournemouthBrighton BurnleyCardiff CityChelseaCrystal PalaceEvertonFulhamHuddersfield TownLeicester CityLiverpoolManchester CityManchester UnitedNewcastle UnitedSouthamptonTottenham HotspurWatfordWest Ham UnitedWolverhampton Wanderers

Craig Burley's Premier League relegation picks

LONDON -- Everton manager Sam Allardyce slammed his players for putting on "a pathetic performance" in Saturday's 5-1 loss at Arsenal and accused them of not following his instructions.

Allardyce had made it clear he wanted to emulate Swansea's performance in their 3-1 win over the Gunners on Tuesday, but Everton were 3-0 down after just 19 minutes as Arsenal ran riot at the Emirates.

"I'm still angry," a fuming Allardyce told a news conference. "I think that accepting an instruction is part of a player's responsibility at this level of football. And we tried to give those instructions with the best information we possibly can in the time available. ...

"We set out to play like [Swansea], but unfortunately Swansea played at the top of their game and we played at the bottom of our game, which is to say that any tactics and any system you pick is absolutely worthless if your players don't play to their best.

"And if you play at the Emirates, you've got to play at your best, all 11, if you're to get anything out of the game. And unfortunately, none of our first 11 in the first half played anywhere near their best.

"That's why we were tumbling goals left, right and centre with our pathetic performance."

It made for a disappointing homecoming for Theo Walcott, who left Arsenal for Everton in January and started for the Toffees.

Walcott had the visitors' best chance in the first half but had his shot blocked for a corner, then delivered a pinpoint cross for Oumar Niasse in the second half only to see the forward hit the post.

Allardyce then took Walcott off to a rousing ovation from the home fans, with the score 4-0.

"It's a shame the players have not just let themselves down, but when somebody comes back to a club like Arsenal and they've been here 12 years, he wants to put on a good show," Allardyce said.

"But I mean, clearly the pathetic performance that we showed didn't give him the opportunity to go out against his old club and shine."

Mattias is ESPN FC's Arsenal correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @MattiasKaren.

LONDON -- Arsene Wenger hailed newcomers Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang after impressive first starts for Arsenal, saying "it looks like they have played with us forever."

Mkhitaryan had three assists, including one for Aubameyang to score with a lovely chipped finish on his debut, as Arsenal overwhelmed Everton 5-1 in the Premier League on Saturday.

It was an impressive start for this new-look Arsenal side, with Aubemeyang and Mkhitaryan having joined in a tumultuous January transfer window.

"Overall, the two players integrated our game well, and they look like they have played with us forever," Wenger told a news conference. "Because they have similar qualities to what our game is about. They are technically good, they are quick. It was a convincing first performance."

Mkhitaryan also assisted on two of Aaron Ramsey's three goals as the Welshman netted his first Premier League hat trick, and it's clear his connection with Aubameyang still remains from their days at Borussia Dortmund.

Mkhitaryan came on as a substitute in Tuesday's 3-1 loss at Swansea while this was Aubameyang's first Arsenal appearance after joining from Dortmund on Wednesday.

The Gabon striker only had one training session with the team this week, and Wenger warned that he will only get better as he gets used to his new surroundings.

"I feel the quality of his movement was excellent, the quality of his finishing was excellent. That is not completely at his best physically, he has still some work to do physically," Wenger said.

"I like the quality of his movement I must say. He is always looking to go in spaces that are very difficult for the defenders to cover. When we know him better and understand him better, I think he will be more dangerous."

Ramsey certainly seemed to enjoy playing with his new teammates as well, popping up in the box to meet two crosses from Mkhitaryan and scoring with a deflected shot from distance. That's the kind of performance Wenger wants to see more of from the midfielder.

"I felt always that he had between 10 and 15 goals at least in his locker," Wenger said. "He didn't do it until now because I think he rushed sometimes his finishing. He looks much calmer. The only difference I see, he doesn't rush it. That's the secret to being efficient."

Mattias is ESPN FC's Arsenal correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @MattiasKaren.

ESPN