It is the new Premier League season’s first instalment of the North London derby, as Arsenal welcome arch-rivals Tottenham to the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.
The Gunners have started the 2023/24 campaign strongly, winning four out of five league games thus far. And they portrayed their supreme credentials this week as they completely dismantled PSV Eindhoven 4-0 on their Champions League return after six years.
However, Mikel Arteta’s team face a Tottenham side galvanised by new manager Ange Postecoglou and currently level on points with them at this early stage in the season.
Arsenal Team News
Gabriel Martinelli missed the PSV game with a hamstring injury suffered last weekend at Goodison Park. He is likely to miss out on Tottenham’s visit on Sunday, although the Brazilian winger isn’t officially ruled out of the derby.
Meanwhile, Thomas Partey and Jurrien Timber remain long-term absentees.
Predicted Arsenal lineup vs Tottenham (4-3-3)
Goalkeeper David Raya has started the last two games in all competitions for Arsenal and kept clean sheets. There is no way Arteta makes changes in goal on Sunday, meaning Raya should get the nod over Aaron Ramsdale again.
Arsenal are likely to shape up in a 4-3-3 formation, with William Saliba continuing his strong centre-back partnership with Gabriel. Ben White and Oleksandr Zinchenko will start as the full-backs, with the latter often looking to come inside into central midfield and help Arteta’s side control the flow of the game.
Jakub Kiwior, Takehiro Tomiyasu and Cedric Soares will provide defensive cover from the bench.
Declan Rice will hold the fort in midfield as usual, aiming to keep things ticking over with his passing and interception skills. The creative glue of the side, Martin Odegaard produced a Man of the Match performance in Arsenal’s 4-0 rout of PSV in the Champions League. This should give him a lot of confidence heading into the North London Derby.
The final midfield spot remains up for grabs. Fabio Vieira got the nod ahead of Kai Havertz at Everton, but Arteta restored Havertz in his first XI against PSV on Tuesday. And Havertz arguably produced his best performance in an Arsenal shirt to date, holding up play well and pulling strings in midfield. The German’s encouraging display in midweek should’ve bolstered his hopes of getting the nod to start over Vieira against Spurs.
Gabriel Jesus impressed on his first start of the season for the Gunners with a goal against PSV. The Brazilian should keep his place up front against Spurs, with Bukayo Saka and Leandro Trossard—both scoring against PSV—on either side of him.
Eddie Nketiah and Reiss Nelson could get opportunities to shine off the bench in the second half.
I am Rohan Sengupta from one of the busiest cities in India, Mumbai. A Journalism graduate with a keen interest in sports, football is something I simply cannot live without and writing, discussing and analyzing the game is what I do 24*7.