Arsenal’s Per Mertesacker eyes ‘very important’ Tottenham derby

Per Mertesacker is ready for a crucial north London derby

Per Mertesacker has labelled Saturday’s London derby as “very important” for Arsenal in the hunt for a top-four finish.

The Gunners visit White Hart Lane on Saturday as they bid to stretch their lead over their rivals and move into the Champions League spots.

Arsenal, who are just two points ahead of Spurs, won this fixture last season, and Mertesacker says his side must try replicate that convincing performance.

“We have a very important away game,” Mertesacker told London Evening Standard.

“We are very close to each other in the league, are two London rivals.

“Last season we did quite well at White Hart Lane, so we will try to repeat that.“

Arsene Wenger’s side have won three straight league games, scoring ten goals and keeping three successive clean sheets.

Since the return of key players Mesut Özil and Theo Walcott from injury, the Gunners have discovered their best form of the season and at times have looked unstoppable.

The likes of Santi Cazorla, Özil and Walcott have been in excellent form recently, whilst Alexis Sanchez has been the standout player in the Premier League this season.

Spurs, on the other hand, have improved significantly after a difficult start to the season under new manager Mauricio Pochettino, having lost just once since early December.

Mertersacker was quick to point this out when he added: “Now they have a new manager, there has been a change in the squad.

“It will be a good game, with an early kick off, so we need to be fresh.”

Arsenal are set to welcome Sanchez and Danny Welbeck back into the squad for the weekend while Tottenham have no major injury concerns.

MORE: Read the latest Arsenal player tweets

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