By Callum O'Connell

18th Sep, 2023 | 7:40am

Leon Osman hits out at Everton for 'passive' Arsenal defeat live on BBC

Leon Osman was highly critical of “passive” Everton in their 1-0 defeat to Arsenal at Goodison Park on Sunday 17 September and called for a change of style.

The former Everton man couldn’t believe the lack of intensity in their game, particularly at home, where he claimed if the performance was better, getting the crowd behind them could have made the game different.

Osman claimed Arsenal midfielder Declan Rice would be shocked at the time and space he got in midfield, with the abject performance from the Toffees players resulting in a comfortable game for the Gunners.

Analysing the performance live on BBC Match of the Day 2 [17 September, 15:10], Osman stated: “Everton don’t actually show any intensity. They want to just drop off, they want Arsenal to have the ball. They don’t put any pressure on.

“You see Doucoure and McNeil doing the full-backs’ job, get into midfield, force the opposition down one side.

“Goodison Park is an intense place to play football, when the home team are on form, the crowd want to get involved and they don’t allow the opposition midfield to feel comfortable.

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“Yet today, look how passive Everton are as a team. Declan Rice won’t believe he’s come to Goodison Park and had this much time on the ball.

“That story happened over and over today, and I thought Everton were miles off it.”

No inspiration

Everton look like a team who are devoid of any inspiration either on the pitch or in the stands. While performances against Fulham and Wolves were impressive despite the lack of points gained, there is an evident lack of confidence and belief in the side, which stems from their poor results.

Now, a defeat against Arsenal is nothing to go into panic stations about. Widely regarded as the second-best team in the country, it was never going to be a simple game for Sean Dyche’s side to go and get a result from.

However, the manner of the defeat will be the cause of frustration for many at Goodison. The lack of intensity, pressing and desire in that side will be a worry, as they sat back and allowed Arsenal to control the game without any pressure whatsoever.

It was the drastic change in style, as highlighted by Osman, from when Dyche first arrived at the club with a 1-0 victory over this Arsenal side in February, that may prove the biggest issue. The team doesn’t have the confidence to take the game to their opponents anymore.

In other Everton news, Farhad Moshiri has been named in a record-breaking £575,000p/w debt claim.