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Dublin: 7 °C Tuesday 18 February, 2020


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Welcome along to our North London derby liveblog. It promises to be a fascinating encounter.

Arsenal enjoyed a decent start to the season, though their 100% Premier League record was ended as they were well beaten by Liverpool last week.

Spurs have had an underwhelming start, including a shock loss to Newcastle last weekend.

When you take last season’s form into account, Mauricio Pochettino’s side’s form has been dreadful if you discount their remarkable Champions League run.

Per the BBC, Spurs have won just three of their last 12 competitive fixture, and seven in 21.

They have failed to win their last seven away games and have only beaten Arsenal twice away in their last 27 attempts.

So with all that in mind, the Gunners would probably be considered slight favourites for today’s game.

That said, Mauricio Pochettino has restored key players Christian Eriksen and Jan Vertonghen to the starting XI, and so you’d be expect them to be stronger than they have been in recent weeks.

Some interesting comments on Troy Parrott from Mauricio Pochettino in his pre-match press conference, as he described how his team should be judged differently from the Premier League’s other elite clubs.

If you see us in five years, we didn’t sign one [expensive] striker and now our main striker is Harry Kane but our second specific striker is 17 years old, Troy Parrott. That is the difference in the projects. I don’t want to say one is wrong and another is good. It’s only that the way we operate is completely different and, afterwards, we need to compete.” 

Who do you think will win?

Poll Results:

Arsenal (60)
Tottenham  (47)
Draw (38)


The game has begun…


Bright start for Arsenal.

Aubameyang’s cross finds Pepe on the edge of the area, and the summer signing fires just over the bar.


Spurs are playing with a 4-4-2.

Kane and Son are up front, while Sánchez is in the unfamiliar position of right-back.


Arsenal are targeting Spurs’ right-hand side.

Sánchez looks less than comfortable so far in the position, with Sissoko having to do plenty of work to help him out.

As I type, Maitland-Niles has a powerful shot from the edge of the area that Kane diverts away from goal.


Tottenham catch Arsenal on the counter-attack.

Son plays through Lamela. Leno only palms the Argentine’s shot straight into the path of the onrushing Eriksen, who has an easy tap in.


Looking back on the goal, Sokratis won’t be pleased.

He left the backline exposed by going for the header with Harry Kane and not winning it, leaving space for Son to run into thereafter.


So close! Spurs break and Son’s curled shot is saved expertly by Leno.

Arsenal are looking increasingly vulnerable whenever their opponents counter.


For all Arsenal’s early dominance, Spurs are 4-0 ahead in terms of shots on target.

As I type though, Aubameyang’s cross finds Pépé, whose header from a tight angle deflects off the head of Rose and goes out for a corner.


Tottenham get themselves in trouble trying to play it out from the back, as Lloris plays a pass slightly short.

Arsenal’s pressing ultimately pays off, as Rose gives away a free kick and gets booked for a late tackle.


britain-soccer-premier-league Arsenal's Matteo Guendouzi, left, is challenged by Tottenham's Davinson Sanchez. Source: Alastair Grant


Lamela appears to throw an arm at Torreira.

The referee doesn’t look like he’s going to penalise him.




Spurs double their lead and Xhaka deserves a large portion of the blame.

The Swiss midfielder makes a rash challenge on Son on the edge of the area to gift the visitors a penalty.

Kane then steps up to dispatch it coolly.


Maitland-Niles plays it across the box to Pépé.

Lloris does well to save the Arsenal star’s low shot.


Sissoko cynically brings down Aubameyang just outside the box.

This has been a far from flawless first half from Spurs — they look very vulnerable down their right.


Lacazette goes past Vertonghen and beats Lloris at his near post with a powerful strike.

That keeps Arsenal’s hopes alive just before half-time.


So half-time and it’s been an interesting opening 45.

Arsenal started well and controlled the game in the opening stages.

Spurs have been clinical on the counter-attack, however, with the Gunners really struggling to deal with the pace and skill of players like Son and Lamela.

The hosts have had some decent moments in attack, though, continually exposing Spurs down their right-hand side and eventually that pressure told, with Lacazette scoring a very well-taken goal.


arsenal-v-tottenham-hotspur-premier-league-emirates-stadium Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane (second left) scores his side's second goal of the game. Source: John Walton


The second half is under way…


Bright start again for Arsenal.

Lacazette gets on the end of Maitland-Niles’ cross, but the striker’s header is comfortably saved by Lloris.

You get the sense the Gunners have real momentum at the moment.


Lamela plays it across to Son.

The South Korean’s shot from the edge of the area deflects just wide.

Spurs look menacing any time they attack.


arsenal-v-tottenham-hotspur-premier-league-emirates-stadium Tottenham Hotspur's Davinson Sanchez gets past Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette. Source: John Walton


Great save by Lloris.

Torreira plays it to Guendouzi, whose shot is turned away by the French stopper.

From the ensuing corner, Lacazette flicks on, but Kolašinac can’t quite steer his sliding effort home.


Great interplay between Eriksen and Kane, and the latter’s shot comes back off the post.

Spurs have largely been under the cosh in recent minutes though, and make a much-needed change.

Alli is back from injury, and replaces Lamela.


It’s now Arsenal’s turn to make a change.

Dani Ceballos replaces Torreira, as they adopt a more adventurous 4-3-3 formation.

By contrast, Alli’s introduction means Spurs have switched to a 4-5-1.

Ceballos makes an immediate impact, as his powerful shot from distance is tipped over by Lloris.


Son breaks but not for the first time, his decision making is poor, as he overruns the ball despite a few options to his left.

Arsenal make another change, as their goalscorer, Lacazette, is replaced by Mkhitaryan.

That change will allow Aubameyang to adopt a more central attacking role, with the Armenia international playing on the left.


britain-soccer-premier-league Tottenham's Son Heung-min reacts after missing a chance. Source: Alastair Grant


Arsenal equalise. Guendouzi lofts a great ball into the box and Aubameyang toe pokes it into the net.

That’s been coming for a while, as Arsenal have really upped the tempo in this second half.


Tottenham have altered their formation and are more attacking now.

Dele Alli is playing closer to Harry Kane and we’re set for a really exciting finale.


Tottenham are struggling to deal with Arsenal’s intensity.

They keep giving the ball away and are wilting at this stage.


A corner drops to Pepe, but he can’t find the target with his shot.

It’s all Arsenal at the moment.


Spurs make another change.

Son is replaced by Lo Celso.


Arsenal have the ball in the net, but it’s offside.

Kolašinac’s cross had been turned in, but the VAR check confirms it’s no goal, as he was offside in the build-up.

A Sky stat reveals the ball has been in Arsenal’s final third just 1% of the time in the last few minutes.


arsenal-v-tottenham-hotspur-premier-league-emirates-stadium Arsenal's Matteo Guendouzi (left) and Tottenham Hotspur's Dele Alli argue over the ball. Source: John Walton


Spurs break.

Kane tries to find Alli, but his cross deflects out for a corner.


Spurs break this time through Sissoko.

However, he overhits the final pass to Kane.

There will be five minutes of stoppage time.


Xhaka, somehow, only now gets a booking after cynically dragging back Kane.

It’s his seventh foul of the game, according to Sky.


Kane goes down in the area, but the referee gives a free kick the other way.

The Spurs striker is not happy.


Kane crosses to Sissoko, but his shot is way off target.

Spurs have got a second wind in these last few minutes.

Wow! That certainly will go down as a contender for match of the season.

It was breathless. You couldn’t take your eyes off it.

Arsenal really rallied in the second half and will feel they should have won, though Spurs also had a few good chances to win it, with Harry Kane hitting the post a key moment at a time when the visitors were still ahead.

Overall, there was some fine skill and athleticism on display, though both teams will be concerned at how ineptly they defended at times.

Right, that’s all from me. Thanks for reading and commenting.

You can read our match report here and we’ll have more reaction to follow.

Right, that’s all from me. Thanks for reading and commenting.

You can read our match report here and we’ll have more reaction to follow.

About the author:

Paul Fennessy


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