Tottenham vs Arsenal - Mirror Football writers predict 'explosive' derby score

by 24britishtvMay 12, 2022, 6 p.m. 11
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Arsenal face Tottenham knowing a top-four finish in the Premier League and a return to the Champions League next season is almost within their grasp.

Mikel Arteta's side are bidding to win three consecutive North London derbies in the league for the first time since a run of five from 1987 to 1989, although Spurs are unbeaten in their past seven home league games against the Gunners, their longest run since they went nine without defeat at White Hart Lane between 1960 and 1968.

Plenty on the line at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this evening and three of our journalists covering the match have given us their predictions on how it will pan out.

You have to go back all the way to March 16, 2014, for the last time either side won a North London derby away from home in the Premier League. Arsenal won at Tottenham that day thanks to Tomas Rosicky's early winner and the thing that strikes me about tonight's fixture is no-one seems to be talking about Arteta's side actually winning...it's all about can they nick a draw etc.



I do think Tottenham are favourites for this one but even if Arsenal lose, they remain in the box seat for top four. When you consider Arsenal's turnaround this season, it is quite remarkable. Arteta is doing a fine job. Embracing young players, English backbone and if they finish in the top four then they will be ahead of schedule. Antonio Conte is a world class coach, he's a sensational tactician but is best away from home. But I still fancy Tottenham because of their strike force. If their front three are at their best, they will score against an Arsenal defence which has looked vulnerable without Kieran Tierney and, for the last couple of games, Ben White.



This game brings up so many memories. Arsenal winning the title there in 1971 and 2004. But the one that springs to my mind is the Littlewoods Cup semi final replay in 1987. Both teams evenly matched, great drama and Arsenal's win paving the way for a period of success of George Graham. Any fan there that night will tell you of its importance.



Score prediction: Tottenham 2-1 Arsenal

HAVE YOUR SAY! Who will win the North London derby? Let us know in the comments section

Tottenham's best performances since Antonio Conte arrived have come against the top clubs. Neither Manchester City nor Liverpool have beaten them and it will be a very different team to the Nuno Espirito Santo outfit that rolled over so easily at the Emirates back in September.

They will enjoy the fact that Arsenal will be prepared to come at them, with Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son looking to exploit the space on the counter-attack between the Arsenal centre-backs and their less-convincing full-backs. Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Rodrigo Bentancur seem slightly more nerveless than Granit Xhaka and Mohamed Elneny and that could be key in what promises to be a powder-keg atmosphere of Spurs' first proper "home" league visit for five years. and could turn into an explosive encounter.

That said, Arsenal are in a rich vein of form at the moment and will fancy themselves to get a goal from somewhere - not least through their set piece routines which have been so successful this season. That would be enough against the shot-shy Spus sides that turned up at Brighton and Brentford recently. Sadly for Arteta, Spurs increasingly seem to be getting their act together.

This is one of the biggest North London derbies of recent years and both sides will be desperate to win. Tottenham cannot afford to lose and let their local rivals clinch a Champions League spot at their expense, so expect them to fight tooth and nail. Playing this game under the lights in front of a full house is a huge advantage for Spurs and you can be sure they will put in a performance.

Bit they don't tend to do so well when they have to have a go at teams - their strengths lie in counter-attacking under Conte.

Arsenal know it's in their hands and would probably take a draw, so that's the most likely result tonight for me. The Gunners need to make sure they don't go for broke and get caught on the counter, but they're capable of managing games now and should see this one out.

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