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Arsenal vs. Tottenham: match preview

Gareth Bale listens to Rancid, dances appropriately.  (Photo by Phil Cole/Getty Images)
Gareth Bale listens to Rancid, dances appropriately. (Photo by Phil Cole/Getty Images)
Getty Images

Kickoff: 7:45 AM EST
Emirates Stadium
TV Coverage: ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Mobile TV
Tottenham perspective: Cartilage Free Captain

Everyone knows what this is.  The North London Derby.  147 League meetings dating back to the Grover Cleveland administration or thereabouts.  Arsenal have controlled most of the recent derbies, but Spurs are always dangerous.

Jack Wilshere passed his fitness test and will be available for tomorrow; Laurent Koscielny is back from suspension.  More doubtful are Robin van Persie and Nicklas Bendtner.

With so many memories for Gunners in this fixture where every goal means so much, tomorrow should be one of the most fun matches in a while.  Spurs aren't known for tackling like maniacs, so the match should be a welcome feast of attacking play from both sides.

Spurs are feeling the injury bug lately: Tom Huddlestone and Ledley King are unavailable for tomorrow.  Kevin McCauley at CFC sees the Spurs lining up thusly:

(4-4-1-1): Gomes / Assou-Ekotto, Gallas, Kaboul, Hutton / Bale, Modric, Palacios, Lennon / van der Vaart / Crouch

We know all about Aaron Lennon and Gareth Bale (the man they call "Welsh Jesus" around SBN).  We know about Peter "Crouchinho" Crouch, England's finest historical lighthouse.  William Gallas?  We know him pretty well, too.

This match, given that both teams are missing their best central defensive pairing, could get a little wild...that being said, Arsène Wenger will probably opt to field his best attacking midfield.  Johan Djourou has been in good form, so he may get the start over the return Koscielny, although it's not certain.  As long as Gael Clichy and Bacary Sagna can hold off Lennon and Bale, Arsenal have a very good chance to see off Spurs.

Potential lineup:


Sagna            Squillaci           Djourou           Clichy

Song        Wilshere (Denilson)


Nasri          Chamakh          Arshavin

With Theo Walcott and Tomas Rosicky lurking on the bench if Arsenal need slice, and Denilson and Emmanuel Eboué if they need defense.

Everyone set their multiple alarms!