Premier League match time comes to the Emirates with Arsenal hosting Tottenham Hotspur in a North London derby when the sides meet in a lunch time kick off on Saturday.
Arsenal are serious title contenders and their title bid got a boost, in match week 13, when they beat Everton, even as Chelsea capitulated to Sunderland. Those results have ensured that Arsenal are now in second place, and just two points adrift of table leaders Chelsea.
Arsenal’s victory at Goodison Park against Everton was a back-to-back away win after the previous one won at Molineux against Wolves.
Arsenal’s win over Everton was all the more impressive league of legends boost because the Gunners never had to extend themselves. Fabianski had an efficient day between the posts, on a day when the forwards created many chances and the final score-line underplays Arsenal’s dominance over the Toffees. However, Wenger’s squad were fortunate not to be cut down to ten men when referee Webb chose not to send off Squillaci who brought down Everton striker Saha in the second half.
Spurs are coming off a morale boosting 4-2 win against Blackburn on the back of a brace by Gareth Bale. Redknapp’s charges are in seventh place, within sight of a top four finish, adrift of fourth-placed Man City, by only four points.
The win against Blackburn got Spurs’ campaign back in gear and underscored the impact that Bale, Van der Vaart and Modric can have on rival defences, with their creativity, guile and vision.
In their last five games, Arsenal have had four wins and a loss, while Tottenham have registered two wins and two draws, while losing the fifth.
Ahead of Saturday’s game against the Gunners, there’s good news for Tottenham, with the return of Jermain Defoe. Defoe has been out of action for the last two months, owing to an ankle injury. Harry Redknapp will welcome the striker’s return, especially as the squad is likely to miss Huddlestone for up to three months following surgery on an ankle ligament injury.
In September, a Carling Cup encounter between the sides ended 4-1 in Arsenal’s favour. Tottenham missed some of their key players in that match, against a full-strength squad used by Arsene Wenger. Expect the score-line in Saturday’s match to be much closer, with the likes of Gareth Bale and Van der Vaart in action for the squad from White Hart Lane.
The following players were in Arsenal’s playing eleven against Everton in match week thirteen: Fabianski, Sagna, Djourou, Squilacim, Clichy, Nasri, Song, Wilshere, Arshavin, Fabregas and Chamakh; Gunners also used the following players, as substitutes: Denilson, Rosicky and Eboue.