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Thursday Cannon Fodder: Derby Day

Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur - FA Cup Third Round Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

It’s here. The most consequential North London Derby in years. At stake: a Champions League place and St. Totteringham’s Day. To refresh your memory, an Arsenal seals both at the final whistle. A draw essentially does the same - Arsenal are 90% to finish 4th with a draw in most models. A loss means Arsenal have to win at Newcastle and against Everton on the final day of the season (but crucially, that’s still controlling their own fate).

There has been plenty of digital ink spilled over the forthcoming NLD. I want to look back at two (well, three) of my favorite North London Derby moments.

Theo Walcott’s Arsenal career is one of the more underrated ones, IMO. The man scored a century of goals for the club. But in my eyes, he became a club legend on January 4th, 2014. Late in a 2-0 Gunners win in the FA Cup, he made an awkward tackle and went down holding his knee in front of the away support. We’d later find out he’d torn his ACL. As he was being stretchered off, in response to jeers from the Spurs support, he smirked and held up two fingers on one hand and a circle for zero on the other. Classy as ever, Spurs fans rained spare change and other objects down on him. It was top level trolling from Theo.

The other two moments came in December 2018. Lucas Torreria scored his first Arsenal goal to make it 4-2 and put the match out of reach just minutes after Alexandre Lacazette had given the Gunners the lead. Just look at the emotion from him and from the supporters. Magic.

One of my other favorite moments also happened in this match (and on social media afterwards). Eric Dier scored to even the match at one and shushed the home crowd as his celebration. A few Arsenal players took exception to the rude gesture and a sideline fracas ensued. Aaron Ramsey and Eric Dier came together and at some point, Dier told Ramsey, who was a sub for the match, to sit down. He came on in the second half and assisted on the go-ahead (and winning) goal. Ramsey sent a pointed message on an Instagram story after the match.

What are some of your favorite North London Derby memories?