Tottenham v Arsenal, Saturday 12.45pm, BT Sport 1
Does anybody want to win the league? Leicester’s draw with West Brom on Tuesday night opened the door for title challengers Arsenal and Tottenham to burst through with a title challenge. But in this particular race, as Leicester slowed, Tottenham stumbled, and Arsenal couldn’t keep up because they had tied their laces together.
Spurs’ six game winning streak ended in a 1-0 defeat away to West Ham, while the Gunners followed up a lacklustre 3-2 defeat away to Manchester United with a 2-1 loss at home to Swansea.
In this crazy season it would be foolish to wildly write anybody off, but the loser of Saturday’s North London derby will certainly have a mountain to climb. And it looks like Tottenham have the edge…
In the last 20 league meetings between the pair at White Hart Lane, Arsenal have won just four times. Their most recent victory came courtesy of a Tomas Rosicky goal in March 2014, but that is Arsenal’s only top flight win at Tottenham’s stomping ground in the last eight-and-a-half years.
Tottenham have won six of the 20 clashes, while there have been a staggering 10 draws in one of the most closely fought derbies of the last two decades. The good thing for neutrals tuning into Saturday’s early kick-off is that both teams have scored in 85 per cent of the 20 games, and there have been over 2.5 goals in 60 per cent of them, so we’re hopefully of a barn-storming contest.
Looking at the likely punts therefore, it’s tempting enough to back both teams to score at and over 2.5 goals at . Skinny prices yes, but history points to both sides finding the onion bag in an entertaining contest.
Based on the amount of draws at White Hart Lane in the last 20 years, punters could easily be tempted to back the match to end all square at , in the knowledge that a point wouldn’t exactly help both sides, but a loss could be fatal.
However, we’re not in the mood to get splinters in our arse by sitting on the fence, and therefore we’re plumping for a Tottenham win at . Arsenal are winless in four games now since Danny Welbeck’s last minute winner against Leicester City, and the Gunners have won just three league games in 2016.
Tottenham have lost just four times this season and are coming into the contest with decidedly more momentum than their North London rivals. 30 per cent of the last 20 league games at WHL have finished 2-1 to Tottenham, including three of the last four, and that’s good enough for us to take a punt at for the game to finish 2-1 to the home side.