Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang says the North London derby can be a catalyst for Arsenal to get their season back on track after a wretched run in November.
The Gunners head into Sunday’s clash at White Hart Lane eight points behind Jose Mourinho’s table-topping side and are in desperate need of a win having gone three games without one since beating Manchester United at Old Trafford.
Another defeat would be truly dispiriting, all the more so given the opponents. But a win. Now that would be special. A chance to shut up all the gloating Sp*rs fans who’ve appeared out of nowhere and to wipe the perma-grin off Mourinho’s face. We could also do with the points.
Writing in the official matchday programme ahead of the game with Rapid Vienna, Aubameyang couldn’t help but look ahead to the weekend.
“I can’t wait for the derby on Sunday,” he wrote. “I think this is the game that we have to make into a turning point for us this season. There’s nothing better than this game to give you that opportunity to turn things around. We have to understand that if we can win this game then everyone will change their mindset.
“A big result in the derby can really lift the players, the fans – everyone. We know it will be a tough game, they are playing well at the moment to tell the truth but we have to take care of our game, how we want to play the game, and make it all about us. We are waiting for this game – we need to give everything to get the win and change our situation.”
Our captain, who has been out of sorts all season, also reflected on what went wrong last time out, pinpointing a poor first half performance as particularly costly.
“We were not happy with our performance at the weekend against Wolves. I think we showed two different faces in that match. We completely missed the first half, we didn’t play our usual game, how we want to play, and of course, this is really disappointing for us.
“There’s a lot of frustration because we know we can do a lot of things much better than we did. In the second half, we showed more that we are capable of putting the opponent in difficult situations, we created some opportunities to score goals, but in the end, we couldn’t do it.
“I think the behaviours were better in the second half though. For whatever reason, we were not at a good enough level in the first half. We know that, and we know what we have to do better from now on. More games are coming quickly now, and the good news is we knoe exactly what we have to change. So it’s up to us to do it.”