Tottenham v Arsenal – Match preview and team news

Tottenham and Arsenal face off in this eagerly anticipated North London Derby with both sides firmly in the hunt for a place in the top four. The Gunners have won the last two clashes between the two by a resounding 5-2 scoreline while Spurs are looking for their third consecutive victory over their local rivals at White Hart Lane.

Andre Villas-Boas’ men have been on a superb run of form and are undefeated in the league since a defeat at Everton in early December. Key to that run has been the quite sensational form of the irrepressible Gareth Bale, who’s match-winning double against West Ham took his tally to eight from Tottenham’s last 10 goals scored in all competitions. Bale has also scored four times against Arsenal in his career at White Hart Lane and will surely be the major threat to the Gunners’ backline on Sunday afternoon.

Spurs have Jermain Defoe available again after the England international’s recent ankle problem, but Clint Dempsey, Younes Kaboul, Sandro and Tom Huddlestone are absent with calf and knee injuries respectively.

Despite Arsenal’s troubles in both the FA Cup and Champions League, Arsene Wenger’s side are actually unbeaten in their last five Premier League matches, winning their last three on the bounce to move to within just two points off the top four. Indeed, the Gunners’ boss has even said that a top-two finish could be on the cards, with Manchester City currently only nine points ahead of them.

Wenger continues to be without Bacary Sagna due to a knee problem, though Carl Jenkinson should be an able deputy. Elsewhere, Kieran Gibbs remains out with a thigh problem while Abou Diaby is doubtful with a calf injury. Up front, Wenger must choose whether to field Olivier Giroud flanked by Lukas Podolski and Theo Walcott or drop one of the former two and allow Aaron Ramsey to come in to stiffen up the midfield.

See what the expert tipsters at OLBG are tipping on Tottenham v Arsenal

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