Can Spurs make it a hat-trick?

Tottenham Hotspur are set to face Arsenal tomorrow for the first North London Derby of the season at The Emirates Stadium.

Tottenham have had a very tough week and it’s about to get tougher as they make the short trip across North London for one of the biggest derbies of the year against their rivals Arsenal.

After a busy week which saw Spurs face Chelsea in the Premier League and then Inter Milan in the Champions League, Pochettino’s boys are looking to make it a hat-trick and get three wins out of three in just eight days against the Gunners.

Both North London teams come into the match in fine form with Spurs having won their last six games and Arsenal who are unbeaten in their last 18 in all competitions. The match is undoubtedly going to be difficult for both sides who will be looking to make sure they put out their best starting 11 in the hopes of winning the clash.

Mauricio Pochettino has said he has “always had a fantastic relationship” with Arsenal’s head coach Unai Emery from when they faced each other in Spain and said “It will be strange but when we start the game we are going to compete.” This will mark Pochettino’s 10th experience of the North London derby and he hopes he can make this Tottenham’s first victory at The Emirates Stadium since back in 2010 when they won 3-2.

It is unclear whether the Spurs boss will make any changes to his starting line up that faced Inter and has said it will all depend on if they look fit enough to play for the full 90 minutes after an intense week for the team. Erik Lamela could potentially be one of those to miss out after sustaining a thigh injury mid week against the Italian’s. Wanyama, Sanchez, and Dembele are said to all still be out and receiving treatments for their injuries.

Following a fantastic return from Jan Vertonghen who made his first start since September, Mauricio will need to decide whether to play the Belgian or to instead start the young Argentine, Juan Foyth, who had been a brilliant replacement for Vertonghen whilst he was out injured. Many would agree that it would be unfair to drop Foyth after he has been playing with such strength and maturity, all agree he has incredible potential. However, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Pochettino chose to stick with Jan Vertonghen who he knows has the experience and ability to help Spurs in what will be a very difficult game to defend.

Tottenham midfielder, Harry Winks, knows just how important the North London Derby is to not only the club but to the fans and has said that despite how big the game is, the team is confident and determined as ever – “It is going to be another difficult game, so we have to get right and physically prepared for it, because it is going to be another battle. It is a game the fans want to win and one that we want to win. Three games in a week is going to be tough, but confidence is high.” Winks then responded to the question of whether or not Spurs could beat Arsenal and replied saying, “Of course they are beatable. The form we are in right now, it is probably the perfect time to go there, it is going to be a good game.”

With only three points that separate the North London rivals it will be all to play for in what is one of the most highly anticipated games of the season.


– Samantha Ramm

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