Onana On How Everton Can Bounce Back

Amadou Onana believes there are positives to take from Everton’s defensive display against Arsenal on Sunday afternoon, insisting the Blues will build on the performance.

For much of the contest at Goodison Park, Everton had limited the threat on Jordan Pickford’s goal, but Sean Dyche’s side eventually fell to a well-taken second-half strike by Gunners forward Leandro Trossard.

The remaining minutes saw the Toffees struggle in their search for an equaliser against Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal, who now sit fourth in the Premier League table.

Midfielder Onana, keen to bounce back in the next match after the narrow 1-0 defeat, admits it was a disappointing afternoon, particularly given the Blues’ defensive solidity throughout the majority of the contest.

“Yes, of course there are positives to take,” said Onana, speaking to evertontv after the match. “We put a lot of intensity into the game, but I think everyone is disappointed because losing games doesn’t feel great.

“It was disappointing afternoon, of course, because I think we did quite a lot of things in the right way.

“I think there’s a positive to take from the defensive performance. We defended pretty well and stayed compact because we knew they were going to try to find Odegaard and Vieira between the lines, but they were very good today.

“We stick together as a team, and we will build from this performance and take on the next one.”

Onana featured heavily for Belgium during the international break, starting both games and captaining the side for periods of their qualifiers for the 2024 UEFA European Championship.

For the Red Devils, the 22-year-old tends to operate in a deeper, holding-midfield position – a role in which he played on Sunday against Arsenal.

Usually more of a box-to-box midfielder for Everton, Onana spoke about the different roles, and discussed his recent experience with the national side.

“It gives me a lot of confidence,” said Onana, speaking about captaining Belgium. “The manager giving me the armband is a good sign for me, and it was nice to go and to get game time because that’s the only way to grow.

“I feel quite comfortable in both positions (holding midfield and box-to-box midfield). I’ve played recently for Belgium as a holding number six and, as I say, I feel quite comfortable, but I enjoy playing everywhere on the pitch.”