EPL – it’s a Super Sun­day

CityPress - - News -

The bat­tle for north Lon­don re­sumes to­day, when lo­cal Premier League ri­vals Arse­nal and Tot­ten­ham lock horns at the Emi­rates Sta­dium.

The Gun­ners should be brim­ming with con­fi­dence as they head into the derby tie hav­ing gone 15 games un­beaten in all com­pe­ti­tions. Their last de­feat was on the open­ing day of the cam­paign against Liver­pool, but man­ager Arsène Wenger knows it won’t be easy against Spurs.

“It’s an im­por­tant game for us be­cause it’s a big home game,” the French­man said at a press con­fer­ence this week.

“We have an op­por­tu­nity to show that we can win these kinds of games too.

“We have to ex­pect Tot­ten­ham to be at their best and re­ally re­spond with a per­for­mance that will be ef­fec­tive.”

On the team news front, Arse­nal have a few con­cerns. Lu­cas Pérez, Santi Ca­zorla, Theo Wal­cott, Na­cho Mon­real and Héc­tor Bellerín have picked up knocks in the last few weeks. Wenger has re­vealed that Bellerín should be fit to play, but the oth­ers re­main doubt­ful.

Mean­while, af­ter a promis­ing start to the sea­son, Spurs have en­dured a dip in form re­cently, and will need to find in­spi­ra­tion from some­where to reignite their sea­son.

Mauri­cio Po­chet­tino’s side won five of their first seven Premier League games, con­vinc­ing pun­dits that they may be real ti­tle con­tenders. How­ever, since the 2-0 win over Manch­ester City, Tot­ten­ham have gone six games with­out a win in all com­pe­ti­tions.

Spurs may be with­out the ser­vices of Mousa Dem­bélé for the clash, af­ter he came off with an in­jury dur­ing the 1-0 de­feat to Bayer Lev­erkusen on Wed­nes­day.

Po­chet­tino told the press: “He was in­jured. He asked me [to take him off]. It was his an­kle, I think he twisted his an­kle and that is the rea­son he came off. It was not tac­ti­cal.”

Else­where on Sun­day, Liver­pool will aim to keep their 11-game un­beaten run go­ing when they host Wat­ford at An­field. The Reds have climbed to third in the league stand­ings af­ter win­ning six of their last seven games, while the Hor­nets are un­beaten in their last four and have im­proved to seventh.

Down in Wales, two teams with a lot to prove will square off, as Swansea City host Manch­ester United. The Swans have not won a top-flight game since the open­ing week­end and are al­ready touted as rel­e­ga­tion can­di­dates, while José Mour­inho has prob­lems of his own, with United hav­ing won only one of their last seven Premier League en­coun­ters.

Mean­while, two sides with con­trast­ing form ta­bles will clash at the KCOM Sta­dium when Hull City host Southamp­ton. The Tigers have been in free fall since win­ning their first two games of the sea­son. They have lost their last six games, drop­ping to 18th. The Saints, how­ever, have climbed to ninth af­ter los­ing only once in their last seven.

De­fend­ing Premier League cham­pi­ons, Le­ices­ter City, will be hop­ing to build some mo­men­tum on the do­mes­tic front af­ter an in­con­sis­tent start, which sees them 11th in the stand­ings. They will host a West Bromwich Al­bion side des­per­ate for points af­ter los­ing back-to-back league games.

PHOTO: STU­ART MACFAR­LANE

CLASH OF THE TI­TANS Alexis Sánchez of Arse­nal holds off Kyle Walker of Tot­ten­ham

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