Chris Sutton reveals his prediction for Arsenal v Tottenham
Chris Sutton explains why he's expecting Arsenal to win a thrilling north London derby at The Emirates
Chris Sutton is tipping Arsenal to claim a 3-2 victory over Tottenham in Saturday’s north London derby clash at The Emirates.
Arsenal begin the weekend top of the Premier League table, having collected 18 points from a possible 21 in their opening seven games of the campaign.
Spurs are close behind, with Antonio Conte’s side a single point behind their arch rivals and third in the top-flight table.
Mikel Arteta’s side have been earning plenty of praise following their strong performances in the first few games of the season as the Gunners look to firmly establish themselves as top-four challengers once again this term.
The two sides last met at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium back in May, when Spurs claimed a dominant 3-0 victory over Arteta’s side – a win which helped to fire them on their way to finishing above Arsenal in fourth place in the Premier League table.
Former Chelsea FC striker Sutton is expecting to see a closely contested game but says that his “gut feeling” is that Arsenal will take the three points on Saturday lunchtime.
“Arsenal have started the season so well, winning six out of seven league games,” Sutton wrote in his column for BBC Sport. “Their one defeat came at Manchester United, and they didn’t deserve to lose there.
“Tottenham are only a point behind them, though. Yes, they have been slightly fortunate with some of their results, but that just shows they don’t have to play well to win.
“Spurs also have Son Heung-min up and running after his hat-trick off the bench against Leicester before the international break. Son is in my Fantasy team, so I was really angry when he was dropped – but then changed my mind when he came on. It was a masterclass from Antonio Conte to wait and bring him on.
“You could make a case for either team here, but my gut feeling is to go with Arsenal – and for there to be lots of goals. It’s at Emirates Stadium, and I think the Gunners will take the game to Tottenham.
“Spurs like that, because they are at their very best on the counter-attack, but I think Arsenal will get at them.”
Meanwhile, former Arsenal defender Martin Keown feels that the Gunners have fallen behind Spurs recently and that should serve as motivation for his old side heading into Saturday’s derby clash.
Arsenal have not finished above Spurs since the 2015-16 campaign but the Lilywhites have not won a major trophy since their League Cup success in 2007-08.
“I think Arsenal are just behind Spurs,” Keown was quoted as saying by Metro. “That’s motivation [for them].
“The front three for Tottenham… I mean, if Richarlison is in the Brazil team but can’t get in the Spurs team, that shows how good he is. There’s four players to pick from. It’s the strongest Tottenham squad I have seen for years.
“I think they will be kicking themselves if they don’t win a trophy of some sort this season. I don’t think they can win the Premier League. It’s not completely out of their hands but [Manchester City’s] Erling Haaland would have to dry up in front of goal and I don’t see that happening.”
In other news, Arsenal are set to be without midfielder Emile Smith Rowe until the end of the year after he underwent surgery to repair a damaged tendon in his groin.