10 Key Takeaways From The North London Derby – Cazorla, Kane, Dembele, Mustafi And More Discussions


Arsenal and Tottenham couldn’t get the better of each other at the Emirates on Sunday, as both sides eventually settled for the share of the spoils in the highly anticipated north London derby.

An own goal from Kevin Wimmer gave the hosts the lead heading into the break, but the returning Kane saved Spurs’ blushes with an equalizer after he converted a spotkick.

Here are 10 key takeaways from the game between the 2 bitter rivals.

Arsenal aren’t better than Tottenham

Since Mauricio Pochettino arrived White Hart Lane, his positive impact on the club has been felt. And if the derby is the yardstick to measure his success, he hasn’t been any bad.

Arsenal are yet to win a league game against Tottenham with him in charge (1 win, 4 draws). Arsenal aren’t better than Tottenham. Numbers don’t lie.

Cazorla is sorely missed

Arsenal might have won most of their matches without the Spaniard, but they sure would have done better with him in midfield.

Against Spurs, the midfield duo of Xhaka and Coquelin couldn’t create any attacking spark to help the frontline.

Santi would have done that with great ease. His presence might have just made the difference.

Dembele is Tottenham’s engine room

Suspensions and injuries have hampered his contributions to Spurs campaign this season, but he proved how important he was against Arsenal. Not only did he force Koscielny into committing him, his box-to-box midfield abilities were handful for the opposition.

His 93% pass accuracy helped Tottenham come out tops in the possession battle, and he completed a couple of dribbles to keep possession of the ball. The Belgium international will play a big role this season if he remains available.

Iwobi’s poor finishing is hurting Arsenal

How many sitters have the young Nigerian international missed this season? While the age and inexperience excuses might be used in his defence, the truth remains that he has been very poor in front of goal this term.

If he had converted that Alexis’ would-have-been assist, the Gunners might have picked up all 3 points. How many more chances will he miss before he gets dropped from the starting XI?

Kane remains Spurs best goal threat

3 draws without their talismanic striker might have resulted in 2 or 3 wins if only they had such a great finisher like him upfront.

His understudy Janssen, is yet to score from open play this term, while Son isn’t an out-and-out number 9.

Kane came close with a fine header and calmly put his penalty kick into the net by sending Cech the wrong way. He remains the best man for the job.

Mustafi is a steal for £35million

The World Cup winner is probably the shrewdest of business Arsenal have done in recent transfer windows.

He is proving to be worth more than his transfer fees, and on Sunday, Mustafi made 2 vital clearances and another 2 interceptions to deny what might have been goals.

He also made 1 key pass. Valencia sold the centre back for cheap.

Son must play more games

The South Korean will walk straight into most big sides starting XI, but is finding playing time hard to come by at White Hart Lane.

Against Arsenal, he made 2 key passes and was just unlucky not to have registered an assist or grab a goal.

His speed and technicality was too much for the hosts to handle. He deserves more chances than he is getting.

Tottenham miss Toby Alderweireld

Kevin Wimmer deputized in the absence of the injured centre back, and his own goal reeked of his inexperience.

Without that goal, Arsenal might have found it hard to take the lead or even get a draw. Alderweireld’s absence has made Lloris more vulnerable, and the earlier he returns, the better for Tottenham.

Tottenham’s faith in youths will yield great results soon

As Kyle Walker hobbled off, a 26-year-old Kieran Trippier came on as his replacement. There were no nerves or doubts from the coach or player himself, as he gave a solid performance with 10 minutes to go.

It highlighted the youthfulness and quality of the youngest side in the EPL. A 22-year-old Janssen replaced Harry Kane, 23, and both were threats to Arsenal’s defence. Sooner or later, Tottenham will establish themselves as EPL giants.

Tottenham still have the best defence in England

Arsenal boast of one of the best attacks in the EPL, but it took them an own goal from a set piece to get their only strike of the game.

With only 6 goals conceded in 11 games, and just 1 from open play, Spurs continue to prove how efficient they are in getting the job done at the back.

They might just make the “goals win you games, defences win you titles” mantra come true soon.

Michy Batshuayi

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