Everton beat Arsenal on Saturday to affect both the Premier League title race and the relegation battle.

The victory was the Merseyside club’s first in league play since October. Conversely, the Gunners suffered defeat in the top flight for just the second time this season.

The Toffees were significantly better on the day compared to their recent performances under Frank Lampard. Lampard was removed as the team’s head coach following a 2-0 defeat to fellow strugglers West Ham.

Former Burnley boss Sean Dyche was then brought in to help right the ship.

Dyche, with help from a few of his former players, gave Everton fans something to cheer about against a tough team. James Tarkowski, who spent six-and-a-half seasons under Dyche at Burnley, scored the only goal of the match.

After the much needed win, the center back hoped that Saturday could be a turning point for the current campaign.

Tarkowski says team showed fans some grit

“It has been tough for us and the fans and for all the staff in the club,” claimed the goalscorer after the match. “Hopefully this is the turning point for the club, there is a lot of talent here.”

“It’s taken me a while, I need to score more. What a great time to do it and a great day. It’s back to work on Monday and we crack on. We’ve lacked that little bit of grit at times and that’s what the fans want. We’ve seen what it’s all about today.”

Coach applauds team’s mentality after win

Dyche also spoke with NBC Sports after the match and hailed his new team’s mentality. “You want a performance.

That’s the first thing,” said Dyche. “And I thought there was a performance there. It was a performance that showed the right application to what we need to do.”

“The basic principals of what we need to do and then some moments of quality on top of that. We still think there’s more to come, but it was the mentality from them tonight. I thought that was excellent.”

The victory moves Everton out of the relegation zone for the moment. They jumped up to 17th place, one point ahead of Wolves and Bournemouth. Both of these teams still have to play this weekend though.

However, a tough Merseyside derby against Liverpool next awaits Dyche and his new club.

Photo credit: IMAGO / PA Images