On September 27th, Tottenham travel to the Emirates to take on arch rivals Arsenal for the 179th edition of the North London derby. The two clubs have one of the fiercest rivalries in the country. Both clubs have had up and down starts to the season, but this is where one of the two clubs can really kick off their season. A victory in this match up means everything to the supporters. Bragging rights as well as three crucial points are on the line in this North London derby.
Arsenal escaped any injuries in their League Cup tie midweek, but the gunners still have quite a few injuries to deal with. Yaya Sanogo, Mathieu Debuchy, Olivier Giroud, Theo Walcott, and Serge Gnabry all are suffering with long term injuries and will not be back for some time. Nacho Monreal will face a late fitness test to see if he makes the squad. Luckily for Arsene Wenger, Per Mertesacker and Kieran Gibbs look to be fit for the visit of their arch rivals. Tottenham only have one major injury to deal with. English international Kyle Walker is suffering with a long term injury after having surgery earlier in the month.
After the previous nine North London derbies produced at least three goals each, the three North London derbies last season combined for four goals. All four of those goals were for Arsenal as they did the treble over their North London rivals in 2013/2014. This was the first time one team beat the other three times in a season in the Premier League era. In the 178 times the two teams have met, there have been 518 goals between the two sides. That averages out to just under three goals per game. The North London derby has taken place on September 27th once before in 1975 where the match finished at 0-0.
The key man for Tottenham in this North London derby is their Argentinian winger, Erik Lamela. Tottenham’s record signing had a terrible time in his first season at the club suffering with poor form, injuries, and adjusting to England. This season he has actually been able to get on the pitch. While on the pitch, Lamlela has been inconsistent. He enjoyed a great first few games, but has been struggling as of late. The former Roma star has always had the ability to go past players and has completed 64% of his take ons this season. He has also created a chance for his side every 60 minutes. The Argentine has the skill to produce one moment of magic to turn the match. Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino will hope he can come through with that moment of magic on Saturday.
Arsenal’s key man will be their expensive winger, Alexis Sanchez. The Chilean seems to have adjusted to England seamlessly scoring in his last two league games and in four of his last five matches in all competitions. He has created a chance every 28.6 minutes for the gunners. The former Barcelona man may have cost a small fortune, but so far he has been worth every penny. Chile’s World Cup star has been starring for the gunners scoring seemingly at will and proving that he is a world class player. Like Lamela, Aleixs can produce that moment of magic to turn a match. He showed this against Manchester City with his stunning volley past Joe Hart. Arsenal fans will hope their little South American star can come through for them again against their biggest rivals.
Emmanuel Adebayor loves playing in this fixture and has scored for both Arsenal and Tottenham.
Get him at odds of 4/1 to score at anytime with Tailorbet (Max £25)
Create your bet here – http://eplindex.wpengine.com/tailorbet.
Like in every derby match, you can throw form out the window for this. It may be a cliche, but these matches can always go either way. Arsenal will go in as the favorites since the match is at the Emirates. This is a game Arsenal can not afford to lose. They need the three points and they also can’t afford to have any negative momentum heading into an important stretch in their season. With a lot of pressure on Arsenal, I expect the gunners to come out with a hard fought victory.
Prediction: 2-1 Arsenal