Five Things We Learned About Arsenal From The North London Derby

Five Things We Learned About Arsenal From The North London Derby

It was an end to end affair at the Emirates, and after finishing the game strongly, Arsenal will be disappointed that they couldn’t grab all three points against Spurs.

So, what did we learn about the Gunners from the 2-2 draw? Here are five things that we noticed from the match yesterday:

1) The defence is still a problem


I’m not sure anyone knows what Sokratis was doing for Tottenham’s first goal. By trying to win the header, he left the backline exposed. It was way too easy for Christian Eriksen to score the opener.

With Kieran Tierney expected to be ready to play after the international break, the left-hand side will, no doubt, be stronger but most fans will be keenly anticipating the return of Rob Holding to shore up the centre of defence.

2) The front three shows promise

It was the first time that Nicolas Pepe had started up front alongside Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette, and the fact that two of them got on the scoresheet shows there is something to build on.

However, it does seem it will take some time for the trio to gain an understanding with each other. Pepe showed off his talent once again but he was very much playing as an individual rather than regularly interchanging with the other two. It’s still early days, though.

3) There are major question marks over the captain

The performance of Granit Xhaka was a huge letdown. For one of the biggest games of the season, the captain gave away an inexcusable foul in the box. It was rash but typical of the player.

Manager Unai Emery may be regretting giving the Swiss international the armband after a display littered with fouls and very little else.

4) Guendouzi is mature beyond his years

The Frenchman is only 20 years of age but he led by example as Arsenal fought back from two-nil down. He pressed and harried Spurs players constantly, and provided a sublime ball into the box for Aubameyang’s equaliser.

Guendouzi showed the £7m the Gunners paid for him last summer was an absolute bargain.

5) Still a long way from being title contenders

Tottenham went into the game off the back of a disappointing 1-0 home loss to Newcastle, and have had a difficult summer with a number of players angling for a move away from the club.

Even so, Arsenal can have no complaints about going two goals down in the match, with Spurs a major threat on the counter-attack. Top 4 is certainly a realistic goal, but as things stand, any thoughts about challenging nearer the top should be given short shrift.

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