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Tottenham Hotspur regained top spot in the Premier League with a 2-0 win against Arsenal in the North London derby on Sunday night.
Heung Min-Son gave José Mourinho’s men the lead early on with an absolutely lightning right-footed shot from outside the area. Harry Kane then, unsurprisingly, added to his impressive derby record with a clinical shot from the crossbar just before the halftime whistle.
Despite all their efforts, Arsenal could not find a route back to the game, falling in another defeat.
Here are five things we learned from the game:
Kane makes history against the Gunners
Coming into the final installment of the North London derby, Kane already had an impressive record against Arsenal. The 27-year-old had scored ten goals in just 13 appearances against the Gunners and added to that with another brilliant finish that slammed into the wood.
The goal also meant that he became the top scorer in the Premier League era match, as well as being his 250th goal for the club and the country. The records then continue to fall for Kane and indicate what a world-class forward he is and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.
I counterattack the road again
José Mourinho apparently has his team playing a style of soccer that suits them perfectly: the counterattack. The current league leaders have been lethal so far during the 2020/21 campaign, breaking the pace and then having two lethal finalists in the form of Kane e Son to polish those attacks.
That style of play was once again evident against Arsenal. Having seen the Gunners forward momentum for their two goals in Game 1, the Spurs broke through in numbers, overwhelming the Gunners’ bottom line, leaving them with few responses. It really was a perfect game plan for Mourinho.
Defense a base for the Spurs
Tottenham’s attack was, of course, exciting when given the chance, but a big reason behind their ability to flood forward was a rock-solid defense behind them.
Between Sergio Reguilon’s four, Toby Alderweireld, Eric Dier and Serge Aurier, there were 31 clearances, considerably higher than the 10 for the entire Arsenal team combined. That anticipation of danger was a big reason the hosts posted their fourth clean sheet in the Premier League.
Battle of the upper half for Arsenal?
While their rivals fly high with a defined style of play, Arsenal are the opposite. Under Mikel Arteta, the Gunners have had an absolutely horrible start to the campaign and now have only one win of their last seven Premier League games, with five losses.
Although they improved after the break at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, they never seemed able to get back into the game. For a club the size of Arsenal, with the resources it has, that’s really poor. It’s no wonder then to see odds as high as 12/1 with Betfair for the Gunners to score in the top four at the end of the campaign.
One of Arsenal’s main problems this season has of course been a lack of goals. Striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been hit the hardest, scoring only two league goals so far.
However, its xG sits at a little over two, suggesting that the Gabonese is still performing, but simply not getting the amount of service it was previously receiving. He managed to have two more shots against Tottenham, however neither went on target. If Arsenal want their team, and indeed Aubameyang, to shoot again, they simply have to create more.
Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris (7); Reguilon (7), Animal (6), Alderweireld (7), Aurier (6); Sissoko (6), Hojbjerg (7), Lo-Celso (6) (Davies (6), 72 ‘); Bergwijn (6) (Rodon (N / A), 90 + 1 ′), Son (7) (Moura (N / A), 88 ′), Kane (7).
Arsenal: Leno (6); Tierney (6), Holding (6), Gabriel (6), Bellerin (6) (Nketiah (5), 75 ′); Xhaka (5), Partey (6) (Ceballos (6), 45 + 2 ‘), Saka (6); Willian (5), Lacazette (6), Aubameyang (5).
Goals: Son (14 ′), Kane (45 + 1 ′)
Referee: Martin Atkinson
Yellow cards: Lo Celso (41 ′), Xhaka (75 ′), Lacazette (80 ′)
Red cards: REACH