There’s nothing greater in football then Derby Days. Whether it’s Scotland’s Celtic vs Rangers or Spain’s Barcelona vs Real Madrid, Derby Days provide an atmosphere unlike any other, atmospheres with thrill, tension, hatred, happiness, and sadness. Today, a derby takes place with stakes on the line which neither team have ever seen before, Arsenal travel to White Hart Lane to face their greatest rivals, Tottenham Hotspurs.
So, let’s go back into history a little bit and see where this rivalry has it’s roots. When English football was first starting, Arsenal was actually known as Woolworth Arsenal, located in the south of London. Tottenham had it’s strongholds in the north, undisturbed, finding new found success. However, a big money move from Arsenal saw them relocate to the North, just four miles from White Hart Lane, Tottenham’s home territory. This here sparked a century long rivalry with Arsenal being clearly ahead of Tottenham by winning more trophies, and becoming more dominant, not just in London, but in all of England. Things didn’t get any better when in 2003, Tottenham captain Sol Campbell left for rivals Arsenal, even after promising he wouldn’t leave.
Today, the situation is quite different. Tottenham sit at second in the table, contending for the league title, while Arsenal sit all the way at sixth, hoping to qualify for Champions League next season. If Tottenham win this, they will finish above Arsenal for the first time in 22 years. But even more important, Tottenham will be looking to bridge a four point gap between them and first place Chelsea, hoping to win their first ever Premier League title.
Arsenal are having one of their worst seasons right now, and might not even finish in the top four for the first time in the Premier League area. This match is crucial in deciding Arsenal’s future. If Arsenal can come out with a victory, chances of finishing top four look bright and Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger might get a new contract. However, if they lose, Wenger’s future at Arsenal will look to be a gloomy one.
As far as team news go, Erik Lamela and Michael Vorm are set to miss today’s fixture, however Danny Rose can make a return to the side. For the Gunners, David Ospina remains sidelined, and Mustafi, Koscielny, and Welbeck aren’t too certain if they’ll make it.
The match will be held at 16:30 GMT or 11:30 EDT. The match will be aired on Sky in the UK or NBC in the US.