Sp*rs vs Arsenal, Match Preview II: Today's a big day…

Tottenham Hotspur v Arsenal
Barclays Premier League, White Hart Lane
Sunday, February 08, 2009, 13:30

It’s a big, big game today. A huge game. We drew 4-4 at the Emirates, and being 4-2 up in the final few minutes, that result hurt. Today we really need the likes of Adebayor to have a game. The Togan has been out of sorts of late, but he does have a very good striking record against Sp*rs. Arsene highlighted this in his press conference on Friday.

“Adebayor has a good record against Tottenham. But we have good players and simply that is the best reason to explain it. Before him, Robert Pires had a good record. Sometimes, I thought about not playing him at the start because it was [a] kicking and tackling game and he was not a tackling player. Then I would put him on at half time and he turned up with a goal because he was relaxed.”

Arsene also talked about Ade’s form and how his desire to leave in summer has affected his performances.

“I believe we have always tried to set good scoring and assists records. I am convinced that Adebayor has not been affected by Van Persie’s successful season. Van Persie has been so successful because he has played in every game. I believe that at the start Adebayor was a little bit disturbed thinking ‘do I go’. But he is getting back on track slowly now and I’m sure the goals will come.”

The line up today will see Eboue come back in and most probably Arshavin on the bench. Gallas, I believe, is to be restored to the team and Toure – who’s recently rediscovered his form.

Almunia
Goalkeeper
 
Sagna
Right Back
Gallas
Centre Back
Djourou
Centre Back
Clichy
Left Back
 
Eboue
Right Wing
Denilson
Attacking Midfielder
Song
Defensive Midfielder
Nasri
Left Wing
 
  Adebayor
Striker
Van Persie
Support Striker

And on the bench, we’ll see Fabianski, Toure, Ramsey, Wilshere, Arshavin, Vela and Bendtner.

The manager has been very talkative ahead of the game and has been discussing the will to win rather than the will for Sp*rs not to win.

 

“I am just focused on us doing well. I want Arsenal to do well more than Tottenham not do well. What is important for us is that we play at the top. Usually, I don’t look at the neighbours and think ‘is he doing well or not?’ You just want yourself to do well. Tottenham have always been interesting games but, in fairness, over the last 10 years we have been more focused on Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool. Of course, we were conscious that against Tottenham we couldn’t afford to slip-up and drop points; it could be costly. You know that if you want to do well in the title race, one of the big games you couldn’t afford to drop points in was Tottenham because it’s a special rivalry. But this year I believe that they want to get out of the relegation zone and we want to come back to the top four so there is a bit more pressure on both teams.”

We have to make sure we focus on our game. We must win. We must close the gap to the top four to 3 points. It is our opportunity to do so today and there won’t be too many more opportunities. Unfortunately, the whole return of Keane and then the Keane is captain thing will add more spice to Sp*rs. But we have the quality, I just hope we put a game in.

Come on boys, do us proud!]]>

  • Fabrez

    Arshavin & Eduardo on the bench!!! YESSSSSS!!! :D

  • http://kierandelaney.net/blog kierandelaney.net/blog

    < ![CDATA[Yeah, with the form of both teams up and down this is a geuinely exciting match! Normally we go to the lane expecting to win - today i'm not so sure. We can, we should and i hope we do but who knows which arsenal team play today?

    On a side note, I'm full expecting Wenger to give Arshavin a 'fuck you' run about even if it's only for 5 minutes. :)]]>

  • debs

    < ![CDATA[yeah, Eduardo on the bench has made my day already!!! :D :D :D
    Arshavin on the bench an added bonus, and a win would be the icing on the cake!]]>

  • Fabrez

    Disgusting 1st half…our best player of the half in terms of attack is sent off…messed up! I kno Eboue’s yellow cards were fair, but Dean shud surely be a BIT more lenient as it’s a derby? He should have booked neither Eboue or Modric…. But at the end of the day 2 yellow cards is what he deserved if i were 2 b totally unbiased…and Bonsingwa gets away with murder! Ahhhh! And now Ade is out for most likely 3 weeks….injury crisis continues…. Well 2nd half should be interesting…we played better without Ade v Liverpool down to 10 men so maybe a repeat with a goal for us? Hmm….

  • debs

    We needed all 3 points, but it was a well-deserved point though, considering! can only wonder what would have happened had we played most of the match with 11 players!

  • Gooner Get Ya

    Eboue is an idiot and has ruined the game and yet more injuries with Ade and Clichy being carried off…can our season have a turn for the good now please!!!

  • Pete

    < ![CDATA[Am proud of the 10 players that gained a point, and almost bagged all three! Could have been a lot worse, and at least we didn't loose the game. Well done to the keeper and the defence. Almunia's saves!!!! :) :) :)

    Was impressed with Song, he did the business for us, won a lot of balls and almost scored! Bentner didn't do badly coming off the bench too. What a goal he nearly scored too! Wasn't nice seeing Clichy suffer a head injury. Wenger says he only needs stitches, so hopefully he'll be alright against our next Prem match.

    Its good that we've got an international and FA Cup break too, as it gives Eduardo and Arshavin more time to get fit for first team action.]]>

  • http://kierandelaney.net/blog kierandelaney.net/blog

    < ![CDATA[Our central defenders and song played brilliantly - Eboue was good as well until he talked himself off the pitch. Best performance in an Arse shirt for ages as well until he fucked it all up.

    Arsenal today were brilliant after the sending off. Song in particular was everywhere and Gallas/Toure looked brilliant.

    A lot has been said about those two but today they were brilliant.

    Its a shame because this was two points wasted, but it was a brilliant point all said and done.

    The worst thing was the Spurs fans. Disgusting behaviour cheering when a player goes down with an obviously nasty injury and calling a player with blood pouring out of his head a cheat. Dirty bastards.

    WE BOUGHT ARSHAVIN, YOU TOOK BACK KNOBBIE KEANE!

    Best chant of the match, in response to the "4-2 and you fucked it up" chant from Spurs fans - "4-4, and you thought you'd won, 4-4 and you thought you'd won". :D]]>

  • Debs

    < ![CDATA[Lol Kieran!

    For some reason, I don't really think Ade's injury is a bad thing really, seeing as we've been wishing he was dropped and it's not a serious injury too. Maybe he'll use the 3 weeks to reflect deeply on his performances so far, although obviously, we can do without any further injuries! I hope Clichy's alright though, cos we do need him in defence.
    Couldn't watch the match :( and I'm yet to see highlights, so I can't really comment about performances, but I guess Eboue had the best of both worlds this time around!
    Funny how we always seem to play better with 10 men! Remember Bolton last season?!
    But as the season goes on, I'm becoming less confident about 4th spot, but I still have huge belief in what we can do, the rest of the season to end up in the top 4!]]>

  • Yemi

    Arsene has alraedy said Edu will return after the internation break. hopefully he should be in for the F.A. tie with cardiff. Arshavinn should be fit to put in bwtween 15-30 minutes. Theo is also close to being back., less than 4 week now. Ade won’t be missed too much. Bendtnar has been more than a worthy sub this season. He has proved critics wrong. BUt we still need a more direct attacking forward like drogba in his days (not literally !!) , like jason roberts, like torres, like etoo, like Theo, like Kanoute. I just need an attack minded player to partner with VP

  • james

    Well Morning goons (notice I didnt say good). Lets put the match in perspective shall we? Ok Eboue who lets be honest is not a fans favourite had a good start to the game such a good start in fact I had to do a sight test lol. Then the twit gets booked for not shutting his gob. Ok then disallowed goal for nothing really but to be honest everyone stopped playing when he slotted it home anyway so cant really say he really would of scored had play continued. Then the modric incident if anyone saw it had eboue not drawn attention to himself he would of been ok because the ref wasnt looking until eboue started pleading innocent with his body language which caused the ref to stop play thinking eboue did something (as in he was the initiater). Then the ediot narrowly escaped a booking but wouldnt just go away not he had to linger until he got sent off what a prat! He deserved to be sent off anyway but he could of escaped had he been smarter. Adebayor is out for a few weeks well that paves the way for Eduardo to get right and get back! We need a clinical striker that understands space and movement and he fits the bill very well. Its unfortunate that Vela didnt get a run before Edurdo got fit because he has good touch, pace and a decent strike rate in front of goal. I am still not convinced we are moving in the right direction. We have lost games we shouldnt of lost, drawn games we were winning and drawn games we should of won. We are unbeaten but not in good form at all. Of course our injury list has a lot to do with that but at what point do we say listen we have not been good enough and identify why and do the best to work around with what we have? Why should it take injury and suspension to players before they are replaced in the team? Eboue has not warranted a starting place since the emergence of walcott last season!

  • Tom G

    Yemi I agree Adebayor won’t be missed on current form: and it’s a good chance for Eduardo and or Vela to get a run in the side. But Arshavin won’t play v Cardiff – he’s cup tied (http://www.arsenal.com/news/news-archive/arshavin-won-t-make-his-debut-against-cardiff).

  • Ric

    < ![CDATA[How can he be cup tied? I don't get it?...

    Sorry I can't access the link im at work...]]>

  • Tom G

    it says it’s because he wasn’t an arsenal player when the game was originally played, and as it’s a replay.. so you can get this site but not the club one?

  • Ric

    < ![CDATA[Ohhh I suppose thats probably fair.

    Yer I can't get many sport or Arsenal websites but found this one a couple of weeks ago!...]]>