Can't help but feel like the Arteta love is mostly sentimentality, over reason and logic.
Thinking about it a bit more, I wonder if there's something about identity in there as well. With the last few years of ups and mostly downs, a lot of people possibly feel like we've lost a bit of Everton identity and maybe the desire for Arteta has a bit of that in it. Bring back a familiar, popular face again and feel a bit more like Everton.
Oh and some people defo fancy him as well.