Arsenal legend: Everton ripped Gunners, in dreamland, will take fourth but…

…only because Arsene Wenger's side do not compete in the Premier League this weekend and so can lose ground in the division.

"Everton are in dreamland - and now they have to keep it up," said Paul Merson when previewing Everton's trip to Sunderland tomorrow, Saturday, afternoon.

Under Roberto Martinez, Everton are a tough outfit to beat and have sustained as few losses in the Premier League as title-chasing Chelsea and Manchester City, putting them in a strong position as they campaign to leap-frog Arsenal into fourth place - a feat they can accomplish this weekend as the Gunners compete in the FA Cup semifinal rather than in the division.

"They absolutely ripped Arsenal to shreds last week. The pressure is on them a bit more now because fourth place is in their hands, but I've got to say they will win this game because Sunderland were so poor against Tottenham [Hotspur] it was beyond a joke."

Everton will have much incentive to claim a positive result tomorrow. Not only would it mean that would have accumulated their highest every points tally in the Premier League's modern format, but would also see them put the pressure on Arsenal.

In previous columns, though, Merson believes that ultimately Arsenal's top four experience will shine through, consigning them to fifth.

"I don't know how they are going to get anything out of Everton playing like that," concluded Merson, "Everton will win 2-1."

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