This weekend sees two of England’s biggest club rivals meet again and just to add to the importance of the match it’s 3rd vs 4th with attention on both managers never having been higher (although for very different reasons).
It is one of the least predictable matches between the two in recent years, with both teams having reasons to feel confident and also worried.
Spurs go into the match with injuries to many of the players they have relied on this season, reports The Mail. Adebayor is one of them, he twisted his knee in training last week and will probably miss the chance to score against his former employers. Mr.Consistent Assou-Ekotto had surgery on Monday to cure a groin problem and is also uncertain.
Modric has been plagued with the flu all week (although will probably feature), and Sandro is also still being assessed. That’s a big list, and also some of the clubs biggest names. A starting without Modric, Adebayor, or VDV, is a scary sight for Spurs fans.
A small plus is Van Der Vaart’s claim he will be fit,
‘I’m recovering well from my injury,’Van der Vaart is quoted by The Mail, ‘I expect to be joining the team training next Wednesday after which I will start to focus on the match against Arsenal. I’ll be happy to play Arsenal. I can’t wait.’
Even if VDV and some of the others make it on to the pitch it’s clear they will not be 100%. This means we may have to see some fringe players like Krancjar and Saha make the step up with some big performances.
Meanwhile, Arsenal have no big injury worries, (missing Mertesacker seems to be worrying no one). But they still have team sheet decision to make, mainly who will be lining up at the front, as rumours are abound that Walcott has fallen from favour, and the starting line-up. Gervinho has return from Africa and will hope to start. Neither of theses options seem to strike fear into Spurs harts however, but an improving Oxlade-Chamberlain might.
Looking at form also doesn’t really give us any clues, as both sides are doing poorly, although Arsenal more so, losing to Milan and then Sunderland last week. Not just losing these games, but playing pretty poorly in them. However, their home form has been stronger, and they have only lost twice at the Emirates this year. The players certainly seem up for turning things around, with Sagna and Vermaelen both promising the fans retribution.
Meanwhile Spurs form is also none too hot, and they come into the game off the back off one of their worst performance’s in a long while against Stevenage. There is also the pressure and media attention on Harry. We’ve not seen this affect things at the club too much so far, but the eyes of the media can be a sure fire way to disrupt a club on the pitch.
An important match for Spurs to solidify their place in the top three, but probably even more important for an embattled Mr.Wenger. Neither teams enters that hot, but despite being the home side Arsenal’s team sheet no longer looks capable of winning this kind of game.
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