White Hart Lane
24th September 2015; 18:45 GMT
Tottenham Hotspur have been disappointing this season, but have managed to win their last three games and have momentum on their side. The Lilywhites were without a win in their opening four fixtures of the season, drawing three and losing one of them.
Spurs would be looking to continue their momentum against a timid Arsenal FC side. Mauricio Pochettino was under pressure after the slow start of his team, but recent results have aided in the Argentine’s quest to build a young squad capable of securing a Champions League spot this season.
Tottenham have been boosted by the signing of South Korean, Son Heung-Min, who has been the catalyst of recent victories and even scored the winner against Crystal Palace. The most expensive Asian footballer of all time, Son has scored three goals in the three games that he has participated in, following his a 30million move from Bayer Leverkusen.
There has been concerns over the goal-drought of last season’s top scorer Harry Kane, with the English striker failing to find the back of the net in any of the games so far this season.
The White Hart Lane outfit won last season’s Premier League encounter at home against the Gunners and would be looking to repeat the feat this time around in the Capital One Cup.
Arsenal FC need to put things right in the third round of Capital One Cup against arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur. The Gunners had an unconvincing start to the season, winning by nominal margins against weaker opponents. They have also failed to win their last two games against Dinamo Zagreb and Chelsea FC.
Arsenal FC’s lack of a world class striker has been imminent in these games with the club struggling for goals, having scored a total of 6 goals in seven matches, 2 out of which are own goals. After a brilliant pre-season the Gunners were billed as title challengers, but going by current form, they hardly look anything like it.
Arsene Wenger would be pondering over the form, or lack thereof, of Chilean superstar Alexis Sanchez who has been abysmal this season. Sanchez was Arsenal FC’s top scorer last season, having scored 25 goals, but the 26-year-old has been struggling to get going in this campaign.
Another reason for concern within the Gunners’ camp would be the mounting injury crisis in the squad, with three long-term absentees having already limited the options at Wenger’s disposal. The Gunners have been left sweating over the fitness of combative midfielder Francis Coquelin, who was withdrawn at half-time in the clash against Chelsea FC. However, Arsene Wenger is hopeful that the Frenchman’s absence is only temporary.
Team News, Tactics and Line-Up
The Lilly Whites are without the services of Mousa Dembele, Nabil Bentaleb, Ryan Mason and Alex Pritchard. Mason injured himself during the celebrations after scoring the winner against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light, while Bentaleb and Dembele have been sidelined for ankle and knee injuries respectively. 22-year-old Alex Pritchard has also been ruled out for the North London derby with an ankle injury.
Mauricio Pochettino will start defender Eric Dier in midfield alongside Tom Carroll for the clash against Arsenal FC, while Jan Vertonghen could form the central defensive pairing alongside Kevin Wimmer. The Argentine would field a balanced side of youth and experienced players in light of weekend’s trip to the Etihad to take on table toppers Manchester City.
Pochettino is expected to field the team in his preferred 4-2-3-1 formation with Harry Kane expected to lead the line for Spurs. Son Heung-Min could be rested for the Manchester City clash and Andros Townsend could be seen filling for him on the right hand side of attack.
Kieran Trippier and Danny Rose are set to fill the fullback spots, while Christian Eriksen is expected to start in the hole behind the striker trying to pick the Gunners’ fragile defence. Nacer Chadli could be seen starting on the left hand side of Spurs’ attack.
Expected Line-up: Lloris, Trippier, Wimmer, Vertonghen, Rose; Dier, Carroll, Eriksen; Townsend, Chadli, Kane
The Gunners lost their last cup tie against Dinamo Zagreb last week and a similar line-up is expected to be deployed by Arsene Wenger, who has recently shown his willingness to rotate the squad. The Frenchman would be hoping that his team are able to shake off last weekend’s controversial defeat to Chelsea FC and get a result in the North London derby that could prove to be the catalyst of an overturn in fortunes.
Arsenal FC are without the services of long-term absentees Jack Wilshere, Tomas Rosicky and Danny Welbeck. With Wilshere sidelined due to the need to undergo a surgery on a hairline fracture in his left fibula, Rosicky and Welbeck are recuperating from surgeries on their knees. The Gunners are also without the services of Francis Coquelin, who was instrumental in the impressive run of form of the Emirates outfit since the turn of the year.
David Ospina is Arsenal FC’s goalkeeper in the cup games this season and the Colombian is expected to retain his place. The Gunners will line-up in Wenger’s preferred 4-2-3-1 formation, with Olivier Giroud set to lead the line for Arsenal FC.
Out-of-form Chilean Alexis Sanchez could be relegated to the bench by the Frenchman in bid to help the 26-year-old revive last season’s explosive form. Per Mertesacker is expected to return to the starting lineup after an absence of over a month and will form the central defensive pairing alongside Laurent Koscielny.
Mathieu Debuchy will be seen slotting in at right-back with Hector Bellerin rested for the weekend clash against Leicester City. Kieran Gibbs started the clash against Dinamo Zagreb ahead of the consistent Nacho Monreal as Arsene Wenger is juggling with the resources at his disposal and the English fullback could be seen starting on the left hand of defence against Tottenham.
Club captain Mikel Arteta will be seen filling in for the injured Francis Coquelin, while Aaron Ramsey is set to return to his preferred central midfield position, due to the suspension of Santi Cazorla. Alex Oxlade Chamberlain and 19-year-old Alex Iwobi could be seen flanking Mesut Ozil in the attacking third.
Expected line-up: Ospina, Debuchy, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs; Ramsey, Arteta; Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ozil, Iwobi; Giroud
- Arsenal FC have had three players sent-off in their last two games.
- Tottenham Hotspur are unbeaten at the White Hart Lane this season, but have only managed to win one of their games.
- Spurs have won three out of the last four meetings against Arsenal FC at home.
- Arsenal FC have won only once in their last five trips to White Hart Lane.
- This will be the 83rd North London derby at the White Hart Lane. Spurs have won 33 times, while Arsenal FC have 26 victories to their name.
Player to watch out for:
Mesut Ozil (Arsenal FC)
The German was expected to finally fulfill his potential at Arsenal FC having taken part in his first pre-season with the club, however, the 26-year-old has put below par performances so far and would want to put in an impressive performance at the White Hart Lane.
Ozil has been re-instated in his key position at No.10 by Arsene Wenger after spells on the wings last season, but the German has so far failed to find the back of the net and has only two assists to his name. The 26-year-old would be looking to repay the faith of his manager and help his team to a win over bitter rivals Spurs.
Tottenham Hotspur 2 – 1 Arsenal FC
Tottenham Hotspur would ideally want to continue their good run of form against an Arsenal FC side struggling to find rhythm and momentum. Mauricio Pochettino’s men would hope to heap further misery on their arch-rivals and on evidence of current form, it’s hard to see how Arsenal FC cope with them.