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Arsenal vs Spurs: Will North London be red or white on Sunday?

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Preview
28 Aug 2019, 11:26 IST

The North London derby is one of the big draws of the English domestic season.
The North London derby is one of the big draws of the English domestic season.

From goals against former clubs to title deciders, the North London derby has become one of the most entertaining games in English football over the years. This Sunday, that very game is back and this time it's an early test for both sides who are aiming for a top-four finish this season. Moreover, both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur need a win after matchday three saw Spurs suffer a shock loss to Newcastle and Arsenal outclassed away at Anfield. 

For Arsenal, this game represents a chance to make a statement to the rest of the teams that are in contention for a top-four finish. That statement, of course, will be that the Gunners are not playing around this season and they mean business after a superb transfer window, bringing in the likes of Nicolas Pepe.

Spurs will also be looking to make a statement and climb back up the table after last week's loss to Newcastle made many pundits question whether Spurs can even make top four. 



How will Arsenal line up?

Nicolas Pepe sparkled at Anfield.
Nicolas Pepe sparkled at Anfield.

Although the Gunners suffered a 3-1 loss to Liverpool last time out, there were still plenty of positives to take back to north London. This is positives such as their attacking play and one attacker, in particular, Nicolas Pepe.

The new signing became the first player to dribble past Virgil van Dijk in 50 games and to put into context just how good of an achievement that is, even Lionel Messi failed to round van Dijk.

Last weeks performance should see Pepe keep his place alongside Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang but also for the first time alongside Alexandre Lacazette to form a deadly front three. 

Behind the newly formed attacking trio is likely to be a midfield three of Dani Ceballos, Granit Xhaka and Lucas Torreira, who might get a first start of the season. Moreover, despite making two mistakes against Liverpool, David Luiz should keep his place in the side next to Socrates, Nacho Monreal and Maitland Niles to form the back four with Bernd Leno between the posts. The attacking trio alongside the reintroduction of Torreira will cause a threat and will score goals against the Spurs side.


How will Spurs line up?

Harry Kane in action against Newcastle.
Harry Kane in action against Newcastle.
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After last week's disappointing result, Mauricio Pochettino is likely to make changes. These are changes such as a start for Christian Eriksen and a return for Jan Vertonghen, two players who are rumoured to be leaving the club.

Tanguy Ndombele is also expected to start for the first time since scoring the equaliser against Aston Villa. The Frenchman will be joined in midfield by his fellow countryman, Moussa Sissoko. This will form a rather defensive midfield trio of Harry Winks, Ndombele and Sissoko.

However, although there could be a lack of creativity in midfield, the frontline should be full of it with the attacking trio of Harry Kane, Son Heung-Min and Eriksen likely to start together for the first time this season. The two fullbacks also offer plenty of creativity with Walker-Peters and Danny Rose looking likely to start there second game in a row. In goal will be Hugo Lloris who will be protected by Toby Alderweireld and Vertonghen.

Prediction

So, now that the line ups have been predicted and the game has been previewed, the only thing that is left to do is to make a prediction. There is only one clear winner and that winner is Arsenal.

The Gunners showed promising signs against one of the best teams in the league last week and the introduction of the newly formed front-three should tear Spurs' defence apart, a defence which conceded to a tame Newcastle attack, to shreds.

Arsenal should come out on top as 3-1 winners and further prolong Spurs' poor start to the season and turn north London red.

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