This post contains affiliate links. “As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.”
Historically, the North London derby has not been particularly kind to Tottenham Hotspur.
The situation has changed in recent times, with Sunday’s 2-0 win in their fifth derby in all competitions without defeat. But on the piece, it has generally been Arsenal’s fixture.
The dominance spells under George Graham and Arsene Wenger have seen Spurs go long periods unable to lay a glove on their neighbors, dreading the next visit to Highbury or the Emirates and the impending ruin that accompanies it.
The consequence of that, however, is that when the victories have come, they have been so sweet.
We have taken a look at the history of one of the most famous rivalries in English football to achieve some of the best victories in the Tottenham derby.
The Spurs did not win a win over Arsenal in any of the 29 meetings on either side of it, dating back to 1995 and progressing to … well, we’ll get to that later.
Suffice it to say, however, that with such a poor record against their dominant neighbors, this league win at White Hart Lane was fair. chef’s kiss for any of Tottenham’s persuasion.
Interestingly, it was former Gunners coach George Graham on the Spurs bench when Steffen Iversen and Tim Sherwood knocked down Arsene Wenger’s Gunners with an initial double save from which they did not recover.
Arsenal’s dominance in the derby was about to disappear in 2010 when Harry Redknapp’s Spurs peaked, yet it had still been 11 years, since that in 99, since they defeated them in the Premier League.
But all that changed thanks to a masterclass by Gareth Bale.
After Danny Rose’s memorable debut put the Spurs ahead, the Welshman doubled his lead shortly after the halftime break. Nicklas Bendtner answered for the Gunners, but Heurelho Gomes held a goalkeeping masterclass to ensure Spurs secured three vital points en route to Champions League qualification.
Granted, the Carabao Cup isn’t exactly the jewel in the crown of English football. But try saying that to two fierce rivals tied for a semi-final spot on the line.
Arsenal and Spurs kicked each other in this match, but it was Tottenham, thanks to wonderful counterattack football, who turned out to be the winner.
Son Heung-min and Dele Alli were the scorers in a miserable Emirates.
After getting into the starting eleven and essentially saving Mauricio Pochettino’s job, Harry Kane was breaking down every barrier in his path.
They called him a tap-in merchant, a flat-track thug, ‘who’s name Harry Kane?’ was asked on Arsenal Fan TV before their meeting in February 2015.
What happened after? The Spurs came from behind to win 2-1 at the end, with Kane grabbing both. Obviously.
Does anyone remember Marouane Chamakh? Great Moroccan boy? Very unreliable haircut?
He scored to put Arsenal 2-0 up with half an hour left and it looked like the vocal visiting fans were in for a long afternoon.
Little did they know that one of the best soccer experiences of their lives awaited them.
A surprising comeback in the second half saw Bale back down before a Rafael van der Vaart penalty tied Spurs from spot and heated things up on a chilly November afternoon.
You can only imagine the limbs that followed Younes Kaboul’s 85th minute winner.
It really wouldn’t have been fair for Arsenal to win the last North London derby at White Hart Lane, right? Good thing they had the decency not to bother showing up.
A quick double by Alli and Kane just before the hour put the game to bed as the Spurs clinched their first result over Arsenal in 22 years.
For a generation of Spurs fans, this is the one. Until then, thousands of people did not remember Tottenham beating Arsenal: 1999 was the last time it happened in a competition.
Heading into the second leg of this League Cup semi-final, then, even with the tie well balanced, confidence was not exactly high among the Spurs faithful. But damn it, it was worth the wait.
It was an absolute massacre like Jermaine Jenas, Robbie Keane, Aaron Lennon and even Malbranque Steed got into the scoring act.
There is a certain level of football misery that you must have suffered before you can properly understand how good this one would have felt. Pure unadulterated magic.
Well, 5-1 was good. But it wasn’t exactly 1991.
It was the last year that the Spurs won literally anything but the League Cup, and it came after a hugely memorable victory over their all-time rivals, who were in an absolute national break at the time, at Wembley in the semifinals.
It was also a Spurs team, with Gary Lineker and Paul Gascoigne teaming up to make sure the Gunners could barely get a glove on them.