Competition: Premier League – Arsenal FC vs. Tottenham Hotspur FC
Venue: Emirates Stadium – Sunday, October 6 – 12:00 GMT (07:00 ET)
Match Odds: Arsenal 19/20 – Draw 5/2 – Spurs 14/5
Arsenal haven’t lost since the opening day, while Spurs are the only remaining unbeaten team in the Premier League. But we all know form goes out of the window in games this big, so it’s all to play for at the Emirates on Sunday.
The Gunners beat Sunderland 4-1 last weekend before coming from two goals down to beat Ludogorets 3-2 in the Champions League on Tuesday. They are in high spirits and will be relishing the chance to end their arch rivals’ unbeaten streak here.Embed from Getty Images
The worry for Arsene Wenger is that his team have failed to beat Spurs in the league in each of the past two seasons (D3 L1). They’ve never gone five without a win against Tottenham in the league under the Frenchman.
Spurs come into the game in poor form, having not won in six in all competitions. They might not have lost in the Premier League but Liverpool eliminated them from the EFL Cup, and Bayer Leverkusen beat them 1-0 at Wembley in Wednesday’s Champions League clash.Embed from Getty Images
Tottenham have sorely missed Harry Kane, who has been out for over a month with an ankle injury. He is expected to be back in the squad here, but is very unlikely to start.
In his absence, Spurs have only managed to score two in their last three Premier League outings, drawing each of those games. But their defensive record remains very impressive, having only conceded five goals in ten games to this point.
Mauricio Pochettino is undefeated as a manager in his four Premier League north London derbies. He will be looking to become the first Spurs manager to go unbeaten through their first five league games against Arsenal in top flight history on Sunday.Embed from Getty Images
Arsenal are favourites but this is probably the best month for Spurs to be facing their rivals, given the fact that they tend to perform worse in November than any other month, averaging just 1.59 points-per-game during Arsene Wenger’s reign at the club.
Last season’s two meetings ended in draws and another tight contest is expected on Sunday. There is so much to play for here in what is undoubtedly the standout Premier League fixture of the weekend.
Arsenal have four players ruled out through injury, with Lucas Perez, Danny Welbeck, Per Mertesacker and Chuba Akpom all sidelined. Santi Cazorla, Theo Walcott and Kieran Gibbs are all doubts, while Hector Bellerin and Nacho Monreal should recover from knocks in time to play. Alexis Sanchez is expected to start up front again, although Olivier Giroud is pushing for a start.
Tottenham could welcome back Harry Kane and Toby Alderweireld for the first time in a number of weeks here. Kane is expected to make the bench but is unlikely to start. Erik Lamela and Mousa Dembele are both doubts but the Argentine winger is expected to be fit in time for Sunday. Moussa Sissoko is definitely out as he serves the last of his three-match suspension. Danny Rose should come back in at left-back after sitting out of Wednesday’s loss to Leverkusen.
Arsenal’s last five: W/W/W/D/W
Tottenham’s last five: W/W/D/D/D
Key Stat: Goals ‘o’ clock – This will be only the second time this fixture has kicked off at noon in the Premier League. The only previous occasion saw Arsenal win 5-4 in a nine-goal thriller at White Hart Lane back in 2004.
Key Player: Alexis Sanchez – The Chilean attacker scored his 50th Arsenal goal in last week’s win at Sunderland and has been involved in nine goals in his last eight league appearances. He scored in the most recent meeting between the two and will be a huge threat to a strong Spurs defence here.Embed from Getty Images
Arsenal 1-1 Spurs – Arsenal are strong favourites ahead of Sunday’s derby, but Spurs are unbeaten in the Premier League for a good reason. They have the best defence in the league and will aim to frustrate their arch rivals in what should be another pulsating North London Derby. Both teams have scored in this game in each of their last five meetings in all competitions, and that looks set to be the case again here, although don’t be surprised if this ends in another draw.