Charlie Nicholas states his prediction for Tottenham v Arsenal
Charlie Nicholas looks ahead to Arsenal's trip to Tottenham in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon
Charlie Nicholas is backing Tottenham and Arsenal to play out a 2-2 draw in Sunday’s north London derby showdown at White Hart Lane.
The Gunners head into the game fresh from having secured a 1-0 win over Leicester City on Wednesday night following their impressive FA Cup semi-final comeback win over Manchester City last weekend.
Tottenham, meanwhile, are looking to keep pace with leaders Chelsea at the top of the Premier League table and continued to pile pressure on Antonio Conte’s men with a 1-0 win at Crystal Palace in midweek.
Spurs are the favourites to claim victory over their bitter local rivals at White Hart Lane on Sunday but former Arsenal star Nicholas is tipping a 2-2 draw.
Nicholas told Sky Sports: “I really think this is going to be an absolute classic, with Tottenham in the title race and Arsenal on the top-four hunt, it’s a must-win for both sides, and I’d be surprised if there wasn’t plenty of yellow cards and a sending off.
“If it’s a draw then some people at Arsenal will be celebrating, having halted their rivals’ title charge, but I won’t be one of them.
“For the first 20 minutes Spurs will be all over Arsenal but Wenger’s new formation provides more of a solid structure to cope with it.
“Arsenal won’t do what they usually do and come to White Hart Lane and open up. They’ll start the game by sitting in with a back five and play counter-attack football, with Danny Welbeck instead of Olivier Giroud.
“If Tottenham score in the first 20-25 minutes they’ll win the game, maybe even 3-0 or 4-0, but after that, as it so often is in north London derbies, anything could happen.
“Yes, Tottenham have the best manager in the country in Mauricio Pochettino and the best team right now but I’ve got to believe that Arsenal are still capable of causing them problems.”
Arsenal are looking to win the FA Cup and finish in the top four this season, and the Gunners will take on Chelsea in the showpiece at Wembley next month.
Tottenham, meanwhile, are looking to pip Chelsea to the title in the final games of the season.