Feb 10, 2018 at 12.30pm UK at ​White Hart Lane
Attendance: 83,222
SpursTottenham Hotspur
1-0
Arsenal
Kane (49')
Lamela (79'), Dier (95')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Mustafi (73')

Preview: Tottenham Hotspur vs. Arsenal - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides predicted lineups, team news and a full match preview of Arsenal's Premier League trip to North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur.

Tottenham Hotspur lock horns with rivals Arsenal on Saturday lunchtime in the first North London derby to be staged at the new Wembley Stadium.

The two sides last faced off at the home of English football in an FA Cup semi-final clash a quarter of century ago, and this latest showdown has all the ingredients to provide similar fireworks.


Tottenham Hotspur

Kieran Trippier celebrates the second with Christian Eriksen during the Premier League game between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United on January 31, 2018© Offside

Wednesday night's 2-0 win over Newport County may have given Tottenham a nice route through to the last-16 stage of the FA Cup, where League One strugglers Rochdale await, but Mauricio Pochettino remains committed to achieving success in either the Premier League or Champions League - perhaps even both.

Going one better than last season and finishing top this time around is now a near-impossible task, of course, with Manchester City running away with the title, but Pochettino's men do still remain in Champions League contention and have a tasty double-header with Juventus to look forward to.

The prerequisite to a run deep into UEFA's flagship competition - into the quarter-finals and potentially beyond - is to finish inside the top four of the Premier League, though, which Spurs are currently at risk of failing to achieve.

Despite putting together an eight-match unbeaten run in the top flight, the Lilywhites remain fifth in the table and a point adrift of Chelsea, who will surely only improve following a hugely disappointing start to 2018, while Liverpool are two points better off.

Pochettino will not be all that concerned for now, however, having seen his side battle to a 2-0 win over Manchester United and earn a late 2-2 draw at Liverpool in their last two outings, giving Tottenham some positive momentum ahead of this second North London derby of the campaign.

Putting together back-to-back league wins is proving to be a problem for Spurs at the moment, last doing so at the very start of January, though Pochettino's charges have a favourable run of fixtures to come once they navigate this tricky test against Arsenal.

Games against Crystal Palace, Huddersfield Town, Bournemouth and Newcastle United should give Tottenham a chance to turn draws - four in their last eight overall - into victories, and potentially build a platform to rival Man United for a runners-up spot once again.

There is a risk that the Lilywhites could take their eye off the ball this weekend, though, as the first leg of their knockout-stage tie against Juve comes just a few days later in a competition that is very much seen as the priority for Pochettino.

Heading into that match with three more Premier League points on the board will provide a massive boost for Tottenham, who are now unbeaten in 11 games overall and are proving as tough as ever to shake off in their pursuit of success on multiple fronts.

Recent form in Premier League: WDWDWD
Recent form (all competitions): WDDWDW


Arsenal

Shkodran Mustafi celebrates opening the scoring during the Premier League game between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur on November 18, 2017© SilverHub

January may have been heralded as the start of a new era for Arsenal, and last weekend's thrashing of Everton certainly suggests that they are back on track, but supporters do not need reminding of past false dawns.

For every Everton (5-1) and Crystal Palace (4-1) result, there is a Swansea City, Bournemouth and West Bromwich Albion just around the corner - three games Arsenal were expected to win, only to amass one point from nine.

All three of those matches came on their travels, which is proving to be a major problem for the Gunners this season. A tally of 13 away points is their second-fewest ever at this stage in a Premier League campaign, with the 3-1 loss at Swansea most recently simply highlighting yet more defensive deficiencies.

Boss Arsene Wenger had confessed that reinforcements are required at the back, but for now he can take solace from the fact that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan - his two marquee arrivals last month - appear to have hit the ground running.

If the Everton match was indeed the beginning of a new chapter for Arsenal, then a hat-trick of assists for Mkhitaryan and a debut strike for Aubameyang was some way to start it, but the true test comes 11 miles west at Wembley on Saturday.

Mkhitaryan's tally of three assists in 120 minutes since arriving from Manchester United is the same number accrued by Alexis Sanchez - the man he directly replaced as part of the swap deal - in 1,507 minutes this season.

The big question now is whether the Gunners can finally put an end to their away-day woes and close the gap on their arch rivals, with four points currently between the two sides in a top-four race that looks likely to go right down to the wire.

Wenger admits that the trip to Wembley this weekend is "very important" for his side, particularly with a second visit to the national stadium right on the horizon - an EFL Cup final meeting against Man City on February 25.

Like opponents Tottenham, however, Arsenal cannot afford to lose focus in the Premier League, knowing that defeat this weekend could well strike a fatal blow in their hopes of making up the gap on the three sides directly above them.

Recent form in Premier League: DDLWLW
Recent form (all competitions): DLWWLW


Team News

Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech in action during his side's Premier League clash with Brighton & Hove Albion at the Emirates Stadium on October 1, 2017© SilverHub

After such an impressive display against Everton last weekend, spearheaded by hat-trick hero Aaron Ramsey, Wenger is unlikely to make any changes to his side unless Petr Cech fails to shake off a calf injury.

That will mean Alexandre Lacazette remaining on the bench in favour of Aubameyang, who missed one big chance and took the other to mark his first game in English football in style. Mkhitaryan, Mesut Ozil and Alex Iwobi will provide support.

Ramsey was given licence to roam forward into the opposition box, profiting from the defensive cover of Granit Xhaka to net three times before being taken off against the Toffees, but more discipline will be required at Wembley.

In terms of the home side, Pochettino has a big call to make at the back, as Toby Alderweireld and Danny Rose both returned from injuries against Newport and could retain their places in the side.

Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli and Harry Kane all remained on the bench for the fourth-round replay, ensuring that they remain fresh for this third Premier League match in a row against a top-four rival.

Kane will as ever be a key player, boasting 21 goals in 32 previous London derbies at an average of 0.66 goals per game - only Thierry Henry, with 43 in 59, has managed more of any player to feature in at least 20 of those fixtures.

Tottenham Hotspur possible starting lineup:
Lloris; Trippier, Sanchez, Vertonghen, Davies; Dier, Dembele; Son, Alli, Eriksen; Kane

Arsenal possible starting lineup:
Ospina; Bellerin, Koscielny, Mustafi, Monreal; Ramsey, Xhaka; Iwobi, Ozil, Mkhitaryan; Aubameyang


Head To Head

Arsenal won the reverse fixture 2-0 in November but have only pulled off a home and away double on three previous occasions in the Premier League era, most recently doing so in 2013-14.

Both teams have found the net in this fixture on 34 occasions, which is more than any other in the Premier League, though a clean sheet has been kept in the last two outings - one apiece.

Arsenal hold claim to more London derby victories (52) than any other team since 1992, meanwhile, and have clawed back an unrivalled 37 points from losing positions against Tottenham.


Sports Mole Logo

We say: Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 Arsenal

This is a game that could well fall into the bracket of 'dare not lose' for Arsenal, and after such disappointing performances on their travels of late, a point from their first of two trips to Wembley this month would not be a bad return.


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Who will win Saturday's Premier League meeting between Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal?

Tottenham Hotspur
Draw
Arsenal
Tottenham Hotspur
48.1%
Draw
14.0%
Arsenal
38.0%
Mauricio Pochettino during the Champions League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Real Madrid on November 1, 2017
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