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Arsenal 2 Spurs 3 - 20th November, 2010
Spurs 2 Arsenal 1 - 2nd October, 2011
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What happened in the Premiership in Match 26 2010-11

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Full League Record of Spurs -v- Arsenal
 
Prem          Pl  W   D   L  For-Ag  Pts
Home          20  6  10   4  28 -28  28
Away          19  2   7  10  18 -33  13
========================================
Total(Prem)   39  8  17  14  46 -61  41
=======================================
Football Lge
Home(Div 1)   55 24  12  19  93 -83  63
Away(Div 1)   55 16  12  27  65 -85  46
========================================
Total(Div 1) 110 40  24  46 158 -168 109
========================================
Total(Prem)   39  8  17  14  46 -61  41
Total(Div 1) 110 40  24  46 158 -168 109
========================================
Grand Total  149 48  41  60 204 -229 150
========================================

Last Six Premiership results:-

Arsenal

Fulham     2-1   Arsenal
Swansea    3-2   Arsenal
Arsenal    1-2   Man Utd
Bolton     0-0   Arsenal
Arsenal    7-1   Blackburn
S'derland  1-2   Arsenal

Spurs

Spurs      2-0   Everton
Spurs      1-1   Wolves
Man City   3-2   Spurs
Spurs      3-1   Wigan
Liverpool  0-0   Spurs
Spurs      5-0   Newcastle

Pos        P  W  D  L  F-A  GD  Pts
3 Spurs   25 16  5  4 49-25 24  53
4 Arsenal 25 13  4  8 48-35 13  43

The Cockerel stands proudly ascendant!

Spurs go to The Emirates on Sunday with the Cockerel truly ascendant over the Cannon and the Goonersaurus. They've every right to feel "Chirpy"! Whatever happens on Sunday, Spurs will be the top team in London, at least seven points clear of their nearest rival, and they will remain favourites to finish at least in the automatic Champions League place of third or above in the Premier League.

Spurs are truly the top team in London. They are the highest placed team remaining in the FA Cup, and they have every right to feel confident about their prospects against Arsene Wenger's side this week-end. There is absolutely no reason why we whould not be 13 points ahead of our bitter rivals at the end of the game. For most of the time the Premier League has been in existence, and following Paul Gascoigne's 1991 creation of "St Hotspur's Day", Arsenal have celebrated what they call "St. Tottering Hotspur Day", being the date on which Spurs have been unable to surpass Arsenal in the League. This year, the ball is very much on the other foot, and we Spurs fans are considering the various options to name the day they won't be able to match us. "St. Woolwich Wanderers' Day" comes to mind. That day might not be too far away!

This is the game we've been relishing since we beat them at White Hart Lane in October (Spurs 2 Arsenal 1 - 2nd October, 2011), and even more so since we annihilated Newcastle 5-0 two weeks ago. That is the performance which is the benchmark for this game, not our goal-less draw last week at Stevenage.

It's too early for authentic team news, but we already know that Rafael van der Vaart is training and that he will be fit for Sunday's game. Rafa is a talisman and has scored in all 3 league games against Arsenal since his arrival at Tottenham. We've lost none of those games. When he arrived in 2010, Rafa created a new Spurs record of scoring in each of his first 6 home games for the club. That form won him Premier League accolades, and in November 2010 at The Emirates, he scored cooly from the penalty spot, after Fabregas had needlessly handled Van der vaart's free kick. The penalty put the scores level after we had been 2-0 down, and Younes Kaboul made our dreams come true with that dramatic winner, from another Van der Vaart free kick. ( Arsenal 2 Spurs 3 - 20th November, 2010)

In April last year, when Spurs were hoping for a first Premier League Double over Arsenal since 1993, Rafa again starred, this time with two goals. In a blinding start, he scored a 7th minute equaliser to Walcott's 4th minute goal. Van Persie made it 3-1 in the 40th minute, before Tom Huddlestone, made it 3-2 just before the break, with a great goal from outside the area. That was Tom's last goal for the club, but of course, he hasn't played since August, and will not play again this season. Hero Rafa levelled the scores at 3-3, again with a penalty, after Szczesny tapped Aaron Lennon's ankles.

Rafa put us in the lead before half-time in our October home game. The goal came from an Adebayor assist, and a suspected handball by Van der Vaart, but it stood! Ramsey equalised in the 51st minute, before Kyle Walker scored a 73rd minute cracker that he can dine on for the rest of his life with Spurs fans! Mike Dean was the referee for this game, and will be in charge again on Sunday. We like Mike Dean! Seriously, he does have some of the best refereeing stats since Spurs Odyssey has been closely monitoring refereeing performances over the last couple of years.

Arsenal have not won any of their last 11 league games with Mr.Dean in charge. He also refereed their Carling Cup defeat against Birmingham last year. On the other hand we've only lost 2 out of the last 15 games when Mr. Dean has refereed.

Spurs could be at full strength on Sunday, with Adebayor likely to resume his partnership with Rafa. Benoit Assou-Ekotto had a very minor groin operation last week, but is expected to play. Aaron Lennon and Jermain Defoe are back in action. I am sure Ledley will lead the side out.

On the other hand, Arsenal's woes this season have included various injuries. They currently top the injury table, but players such as Gibbs, Chamakh, Koscielny, and Jenkinson could figure. Aaron Ramsey hobbled off last week in Arsenal's Cup defeat at Sunderland (oh, how we enjoyed that defeat!), and of course superstar Jack Wilshere is out for a while yet. In what could yet be Arsenal's worst Premier League season, and Spurs' best, one does wonder how our rivals would have managed without Robin van Persie, who has scored 22 of their 48 league goals. He will be one to watch on Sunday, as will 18 year old Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, another graduate of Southampton who has made a great impression when given the chance by Wenger, who controversially substituted the youngster in one recent game, drawing massive boos from the Arsenal crowd.

It's time for another star performance from another former Saint, and that's our own Gareth Bale, surely ready to rip up the Arsenal defence, such as it will be, having conceded 14 goals in their last 8 games. I look forward to seeing Luka Modric back in action too.

I posted on Twitter earlier this week the fact that Harry Redknapp has lost just 5 out of 27 London Derby league matches since he took over at Tottenham. Only one of those has been against Arsenal, and that was at their place in October 2009. We've won three and drawn one of our four london games played so far this season. (See our recent record in London Derby League matches here)

Since that game against Newcastle, we Spurs fans have had great fun watching Arsenal beaten 4-0 by AC Milan. Szczesny is in for some stick over his pre-match suggestion that Arsenal would do better than Spurs did in the San Siro last year! Then last week, Arsenal were knocked out of the FA Cup by Sunderland. Our enemies have in fact lost 8 of their last 17 games in all competitions. By comparison, Spurs have lost just 2 in 17.

I'm not so rash as to count chickens (or cockerels) in this game, but I can say that I cannot remember looking forward to an away game against "The Others" as much as this one. The papers, and pundits love us, and not our rivals at this time. The players and fans can go into the game feeling confident. Arsenal will have trepidation. We fear nothing, and no-one. They should fear us!

I'm predicting Spurs to win, but I think Van Persie is likely to score, so I'll go for a 2-1! Here's to a surreptitious celebratory pint in an Arsenal pub after the game. Last year it was called "The Library"!

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