The first North London derby of the season will take place on Saturday

Arsenal have demonstrated that they are serious title contenders this season and will want to finish with a major trophy, Arteta’s discerning philosophy has yielded great results. The team is at the top of the table; they have only lost one game and must uphold this competitive spirit to win their first Premier League title since 2004. Arteta has the squad and a clinical striker to contend with any club in the Premier League.

While Tottenham are on the same path as Arsenal, they have yet to endure a capitulation. Conte has morphed the club into a formidable foe, and the players will be eager to end the club’s trophy drought this season. Conte’s approaches have blossomed, and the players have executed seamlessly, but it remains to be seen whether they will maintain this form in future contests.

Arsenal Form (all competition): W-W-D-W-D-W

Tottenham form (all competition): W-D-W-L-W-L 

Injury and team news 

Arsenal have a long list of injuries, with left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko the longest-term absentee, out for the derby due to a calf injury. Elneny will also be unavailable due to a knock. While others are questionable, likes of Partey, Tierney, and Soares for the big game.

Conte does not have a lengthy injury list, and all of his starters are available for the match. Although Ben Davies and Lucas Moura remain uncertain for the crucial game, and most importantly, cornerstone keeper Hugo Lloris remains doubtful due to a thigh injury. However, his possibility will be known prior to the game.

Also Read: Top 10 players to play for both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur

Players to watch

Martin Odegaard 

This season, the Norwegian has been the most significant player, who had set the tempo of the game in every match. Odegaard has remained true to his surname, being the guard of midfield and covering the entire ground. His every touch and defence penetrating passes have offered fluidity in the games, and he has worked well with his teammates. The youngster’s reading of the game has resulted in spirited football, and he will be a player to watch in the derby game.

Harry Kane

Kane has scored 13 Goals in the North London derby (Courtesy: Tottenham)

Kane has been an orchestra in front of goal, stepping up when other strikers are unable to find the net and providing the end product for Tottenham. However, Kane needed a number of games to reach his full potential last season, but Conte was able to influence the player’s attitude, and he went on a scoring spree. This season, the 29-year-old has six goals in seven Premier League games and will pose a threat to Arsenal with his goal-scoring willingness. Kane has also scored the most goals in the North London derby.

Head-to-head stats

Matches: 191
Arsenal: 79
Draws: 51
Tottenham: 61

Arsenal predicted lineup: 

Ramsdale; White, Saliba, Gabriel, Zinchenko; Xhaka, Partey; Saka, Odegaard, Martinelli; Jesus

Tottenham predicted lineup: 

Lloris; Romero, Dier, Lenglet; Perisic, Bentancur, Hojbjerg, Sessegnon; Kulusevski, Kane, Son

Arsenal vs Tottenham: Prediction 

On paper, both teams have a strong squad, and the North Londoners will face a difficult test. Arsenal will undoubtedly be looking to avenge their last time defeat which derailed their Champions League qualification.

The club has a solid squad ready to take on any challenge, but they must be vigilant in counter-attacks, as they were complacent at the back last time out at Old Trafford and conceded three goals, which Tottenham can exploit with the pace of their strikers. Tottenham are a dangerous team that can expose any defence if given a chance, but we believe both teams will share the spoils.

Prediction: Arsenal 2-2 Tottenham

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