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AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

STAR PREVIEW Thurs: Tottenham v Arsenal

There’s no such thing as a meaningless North London Derby but this meeting between Tottenham and Arsenal is absolutely pivotal and neutrals could be in for a thrilling encounter at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The stakes are sky-high for both sides. Arsenal would secure a spot in the Champions League for the first time since the 2016/17 season with a win, whilst a victory for Spurs would reduce the gap between them and the Gunners to just a single point with two games remaining.

Both sides approach this game in good form, with Arsenal having won their last four in a row, including wins over Chelsea, Manchester United and West Ham. Tottenham have won three of their last six matches and performed impressively when taking a point off title-chasing Liverpool at Anfield at the weekend.

A repeat of Tottenham’s performance at the weekend – when they went toe-to-toe with Liverpool and were a huge threat on the break thanks to Son Heung-Min, Harry Kane, Dejan Kulusevski, and Ryan Sessegnon – would make them extremely tough to beat and is arguably a more impressive team performance than any of Arsenal’s recent wins.

Tottenham Hotspur v Arsenal
Premier League
19:45 Sky Sports Main Event HD / Sky Sports Premier League HD / Sky Sports Ultra HD

HEAD-TO-HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches)
SEP 2021 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 3-1 Tottenham
MAR 2021 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 2-1 Tottenham
DEC 2020 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 2-0 Arsenal
JUL 2020 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 2-1 Arsenal
SEP 2019 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 2-1 Tottenham
MAR 2019 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 1-1 Arsenal
DEC 2018 CARABAO CUP Arsenal 0-2 Tottenham
DEC 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 4-2 Tottenham
FEB 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 1-0 Arsenal
NOV 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 2-0 Tottenham

However, Mikel Arteta’s men have beaten three of the current top seven, showing a mix of quality and grit to do so, and they also have plenty of attacking threat. Bukayo Saka (11 Premier League goals), Gabriel Martinelli and Eddie Nketiah all offer pace and a direct threat upfront, whilst Martin Odgeaard and Emile Smith-Rowe have proven capable of unlocking deep-lying defences.

Under Antonio Conte, Spurs have become much more resolute defensively but this game could still be an open one. With just two games left after this, a anything but a win would make overhauling Arenal considerably more difficult (both sides are favourites to win their last two games) and we should see a proactive approach from the hosts. This Is likely to suit Mikel Arteta’s men, who were so. effective on the break when beating Chelsea 4-2 at Stamford Bridge, and it’d be no surprise to see both sides create opportunities.

The North London Derby is traditionally high-scoring – four of the last five meetings between the pair have seen over 2.5 goals, six of Arsenal’s last seven games have seen three or more goals scored. The 8/11 about that happening again looks the best value in what could be an enthralling encounter.

WILLIAM KEDJANYI


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