The Arsenal fans are feeling apprehensive in the Transfer Tavern ahead of a potentially season-defining fixture against their local-rivals at Wembley Stadium this afternoon.
Arsene Wenger takes his side to face an in-form Tottenham Hotspur team today for an eagerly anticipated North-London derby which could single-handedly end The Gunners’ ambitions of finishing inside the top-four this season. After 26 matches Arsenal sit 5 points adrift of 4th place Chelsea and 4 points adrift of Tottenham Hotspur, so it goes without saying that their derby fixture is something of a must-win for the club.
There is certainly a lot of pressure resting on the shoulders on both sides ahead of their clash, but Arsenal should be buoyed by the presence of both Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who were both in scintillating form against Everton last weekend. The pair who previously played together a Borussia Dortmund took Everton to the sword and linked up on multiple occasions to terrorise The Toffees defence.
Aubameyang has arrived with high expectations due to his extortionate transfer fee and his eyebrow-raising goalscoring record in the Bundesliga, but his performance will not be the most important in Arsenal red this afternoon.
The individual performance that will have the greatest impact on Arsenal’s success this afternoon is that of Mesut Ozil (valued at £45 million by Transfermarkt). The German international has been strutting his stuff delightfully of late and comfortably Arsenal’s most creative attacking influence in the final-third.
Ozil’s ability to naturally drift into space and consistently play incisive forward passes have made him the natural candidate to undertake the responsibility of being Arsenal’s focal-point in attack over the years. However, he has often been criticised for going missing in blockbuster fixtures such as the one he faces today, so it’s about time he proved those doubters wrong with a devastating midfield performance to inspire Arsenal to victory.
Tottenham possess an incredibly solid defensive unit and they often make life difficult for elusive midfielders such as Ozil to find space between the lines, but he simply must find a way to out-think his opponents today if Arsenal are to have any chance of recording a vital victory in their bid to achieve a top-four finish.
Historically, the North London derby isn’t an easy game to predict. But if you are willing to take a position on the big rivalry game this Saturday, we have an Premier League outright win treble that will pay out handsomely! In this week’s Accy Show, we’ve also put together a fantastic EFL fourfold, with odds that could see you earn ten times your stake. Check it out and let us know where you’re putting your coins this weekend!