In his eighth game as manager, Mikel Arteta has seen Everton thrash his new team 6-0 and Newcastle edge 1-0 away from home but says it is good to go to Goodison knowing that “you can push forward if you’re hungry”.
Martinelli, who hit a superb late winner against the visitors at St James’ Park, was on the bench for Everton in their 4-0 home drubbing against Liverpool last weekend but made his first Premier League start this afternoon as Everton chase their first victory since opening day.
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The 22-year-old has now scored in successive games since joining Newcastle from Spartak Moscow in August and has a goal each against Rennes and Birmingham.
He has struggled to establish himself at Newcastle, to the extent that Ronald Koeman has named an inexperienced midfield diamond in their recent defeats at home to Manchester City and Chelsea.
In an interview with Sky Sports before the derby, Arteta said: “I’m confident Gabriel [is] ready, he’s very strong. He’s an electric player on the counterattack, so it’s great for us to have a really dynamic winger that’s dangerous.
“We need to pick them up when they lose the ball – he’s not afraid of attacking lines. The second ball he’s not too keen on. He’s hungry. We need to create space, space to keep going forward. He’s not a big man but he wants to run and go forward. That’s the best thing I can say for me. I like his attitude.”
With Everton next to Sunderland and Newcastle on the road, Arteta’s side are at least safe but he added: “The confidence is down and this is a derby. I hope to put that right, to win, and hopefully we will. I hope I can push forward. We’ve got to look at the clean sheet, the last three and then these next two games.
“Goodison Park has been very good to us in the last four or five years so we’re going there with great expectations. I hope we can be a team in the next six or seven games that can push forward in all four competitions.”
Marco Silva, the Everton manager, insisted that a first win of the season could come as soon as the next match after the defeat by Manchester City in which Everton were woeful in the opening 45 minutes.
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They spent the summer trying to solve their problem in that period, but while the Dutchman understood it had taken time to adjust to his new team, the statistics do not lie as Everton have won just once in 20 Premier League outings at Goodison Park.
Silva said: “I can understand that a lot of the players didn’t play against Manchester City. They have to find their connection again. They need time. If we are playing away against Chelsea or Manchester City, we are behind in all the games.
“It was the same for last season. This season was like that. The league is the most competitive in the world and we need to find our level and keep working.
“I like my players to stay with my way, to become more comfortable and playing better football. I’m clear I need to fix this with the squad I have in my hands and the tools I have available. But today we are optimistic. If tomorrow is another difficult game for us we can do more.”