After the huge North London derby right at the end of last season, the derby will be pivotal to both teams’ season yet again. Going into this match both teams will certainly feel like they have a chance at beating Manchester City to the title this year and a win here for either team would be a huge step in the right direction.
Arsenal will be buoyed by the knowledge that the home team has won in all of the last 6 North London derbies, so being at the Emirates for this one could be the difference. Spurs will be confident though, after a comprehensive 3-0 win in the last derby saw them clinch Champions League football for this year, they know they are good enough to beat the Gunners.
Arsenal v Tottenham Predicted Line-ups
Arsenal’s possible starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Ramsdale; White, Saliba, Gabriel, Tierney; Partey, Xhaka; Saka, Odegaard, Martinelli; Jesus
Tottenham Hotspur’s possible starting line-up (3-4-2-1): Forster; Romero, Dier, Lenglet; Emerson, Bentancur, Hojbjerg, Perisic; Richarlison, Son; Kane
It is almost too obvious to back Xhaka to get a booking; he has been booked in 4 of his last 5 North London derbies. He has been playing in a more attacking role this season which has seen him score 1 and register 3 assists but has still been booked twice so far in 7 matches. Arsenal looked strongest at the start of the season with Xhaka and Partey in the midfield but with recent injuries to Partey we have seen Sambi Lokonga and Elneny play alongside Xhaka.
Elneny is injured so is unavailable and while Partey did not join the Ghana squad during the international break, I suspect this was so he could focus on being fit for this match. Xhaka has only been booked this season in matches where he has played alongside Partey and in a North London derby where cards are expected, he could be booked again.
Xhaka is up against Hojbjerg, who drew more fouls than Heung-Min Son last year and as Spurs are the away team and favour counter-attacking football, Xhaka will have to cover these moves and tactical fouls are likely.
Xhaka has a reputation for yellow cards with the referees and this can see him booked for much softer fouls than other players, in this derby he is one of the most likely players to be booked yet again.
Jesus has been such a key player for Arsenal already this season and is a huge improvement to their squad both on and off the ball. He is pressuring opponents at the same rate as he was with Manchester City, which shows how confident Arsenal are in pressing high now they have him.
Jesus plays an important role, he helps shield balls from opposition centre backs into their midfield and will therefore drop into midfield to try and win the ball back when these passes get beyond him, something that saw him get booked against Bournemouth.
Jesus commits 2.36 fouls per 90 this season and these are usually tactical fouls. Only Joao Palhinha has received more yellow cards in the Premier League this season than Gabriel Jesus and the Arsenal man is also the 4th highest fouler in the league.
Jesus will be very important in protecting counter attacks when Arsenal lose possession in the middle third of the pitch and in a high-pressure game like this, I think he is likely to be yellow carded in this match.
Spurs’ defence will have to face Gabriel Jesus, the most fouled player in the league, and Gabriel Martinelli, the 5th most fouled player in the league. For Spurs, contending with these two will be a real battle. Eric Dier has started every match for Spurs this season and is a real favourite of Antonio Conte.
He will likely start as the central defender in their back three and will therefore be responsible for tracking Jesus’ movement. When Jesus gets the ball into feet Dier will be right on him and Jesus will fancy himself to turn Dier and create his own opportunities.
Dier has only tackled 40% of dribblers so far this season, 80% of Premier League centre-backs perform better than this. With Martinelli also drifting inside, this only adds to the challenges Dier will face in this match.
While Dier is not carded often, I think he could really struggle in this match so is good value for a booking.
Written by an Andy verified content writer
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How to watch Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League?
📅 When is Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur? / Saturday, 1st October 2022, 12:30
🏟 Where is Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur? / Emirates Stadium (London)
📺 What TV channel is