Ahead of the last North London derby, Mikel Arteta asked a long-standing member of staff to hammer home the importance of the north London derby to his players.
We can only speculate as to who that person was and what they said, but we like to imagine the players were left in a trance, continuously reciting “What do we think of Tottnum? Sh*t. What do we think of sh*t? Tottnum” until they were frothing at the mouth.
Whatever happened. It certainly worked. Arsenal were rampant when our neighbours visited Emirates Stadium, scoring three times in the first half before (mostly)coasting through the second. It was a memorable day and helped kick-start the season after a torried opening month or so.
“We try to approach every game emotionally in the best way,” said Arteta when asked about September’s special pep talk.
“There are moments and people that can describe what a game is better than I do. Or in a different way than I do. We always try to find the right way to get the players in the right mindset to play the game that they have to that day.
On whether he has anything special planned this time around, he added: “Whatever we do, it’s with the door closed. We’ll continue to do that.”
Of course, the stakes could not be higher tomorrow night. There are not just bragging rights up for grabs but also, with a Gunners win, the chance to secure Champions League football. On the other hand, a defeat could see Antonio Conte’s players wrestle control of momentum heading into the final week of the season.
Victory is going to be easier said than done, Arsenal haven’t won away at Sp*rs in seven matches (at three venues), a run that is our worst since the 1960s. Arteta insists his players know exactly what’s at stake.
“The message is clear,” he said. “If we win against them, we’re in the Champions League next season. You don’t need anymore motivation than that.
“The opportunity is there and we’re going to play and go for it as we always do. It’s how we came to this position and it’s how we’re going to approach it.
“We all know about the history of the north London derby and what it means to our fans. After that, it’s a football pitch with a lot of noise and crowd that will be excited to support their team and we’ll have our fans as well, for sure, 100 per cent behind the team.”
While defeat for Sp*rs would kill off their top four ambitions, the same can’t be said for Arsenal. There would still be a one-point advantage heading into the final two games of the season against Newcastle and Everton.
Arteta was asked if that means the pressure is slightly off his stars.
“For me, it’s not about the pressure,” he said. “It’s about having the inner belief that tomorrow is the day and that tomorrow we want to achieve what we’ve earned.
“We always try to explain to the players what they should expect. How they can handle certain situations, how they can visualise the game before they play it and it won’t be different for this game.”
Would love us to win at the toilet bowl,!
It’s probably the hardest game we could have right now. They have nowhere to go other than win and we have a safety net so subconsciously they have all the motivation in the world and we don’t. Let’s just hope the pressure gets to them big time because Newcastle away is a very tough fixture to win.
…and maybe more pressure on their shoulders than on ours. That extra pressure may breed a level of hesitancy which might work in our favour.
I see a draw though; another draw at the Magpies, and a win at Emirates over an already safe Everton.
71 points for us.
I would be telling the boys “You’re 90 minutes away from the Champions League. Forget it’s Spurs. Fuck their fans – the biggest set of losers known to mankind. Just go out there AND WIN.
Get your arse in the changing room tonight mate, you got me in the right mindset for it!
On away wins, just two for Spurs and five for Arsenal in 30 years. So hope we break that pattern.
Talking of statistics Michael Oliver is ref, we’ve had a mixed bag of results with him in charge being the losing side 3 times more than the winning, a lot of draws aswell in around 40 games, 3 reds & a lot of yellows, being a geordie supporter he might want to put this CL spot to bed before we take them on lol.. the good thing about Micheal is he aint Mike Dean, let’s all hope he has a terrific game and doesn’t get swayed by our moaning vociferous opponents, also he doesn’t send off Xhaka which with a… Read more »
Let’s fill that fucking shit hole with red smoke and mayhem!
I’ll be watching from behind the settee with the sound off and a pillow sellotaped over my face.
Yeah I often turn the sound off when we play away. Somehow not hearing the home crowd’s excitement makes me less nervous / angry when we concede
Aka: petr cech’s helmet
I love Arteta’s insistence that what is said stays behind closed doors. No unnecessary jabs at the Spuds for them to use as motivation.
I’ll take anything but a loss tomorrow, although I’d love it if we put a few past them and secured CL for next year in style. Can’t see it happening, though. Expecting a cagey game.
Haha me too. Except that wouldn’t it be funny that, once our Amazon documentary comes out, everything will actually be there for all of us to see? And maybe all he’s captured saying is: guys, come on, it’s tottnum
Hoping for a win and three points, but a draw won’t be a terrible result either!
Score the first goal and force them to have to do something other than playing on the counter.
COYG!!!! Its been a while since we sealed a CL spot with games to spare. This could be that moment!
We will lose tomorrow.
Arsenal never, EVER, do anything the easy way. If you don’t believe me then just look at what’s already happened this season.
We will finish top-four by winning the last two games of the season, probably with an injury-time winner against Everton.
BTW: Spuds are ridiculously inconsistent and will probably drop points against Burnley after they beat us.
Why am I not surprised.
It would be something else if Xhaka – 30 yards out – was the player to score that injury time winner against Everton.
Totally possible, but how about if that doesn’t happen you apologize here in the comments for being wrong? It’s easy to make a claim but harder to admit when you’re wrong! Just this once
I’ll be too drunk
We need Ian Wright, Tony Adams, and Martin Keown in the dressing room before the game to pup up the players, and Sol Campbell to watch the match in his Arsenal kit just to p*ss them off.
We just need to keep it simple and get out tactics right!
Our boys know what it means and we have come to know how passionate they can be in these kind of games!
We are winning tomorrow and then we can now wait to enjoy the summer transfer market
That’s the spirit! 💪🏻
Keep the clean sheet is a good result,winning is the best🤣🤣
Who could they have wheeled in? Perry Groves? Nige? Charlie George? All around the place still. I’d love to think it was Wrighty… “It’s fucking Tottenham, go out there and take it. Fuck them right up and the fans will fucking love you forever.” Or something like that!
Clearly the Author is having a laugh and it was Jack Wilshire when he was back training with the club.
Can’t wait. I’ll watch it with my eyes closed and my heart in my mouth. I can see a 2-1 for arsenal with a 2nd goal scored on the 89th minutes by non other than Lacazette who has been influential this year despite the negative talk on some blogs. COYG.
Influential in what…?
Keeping the ball out of the opposition’s net…?
He’s a major reason we didn’t pick up any points against Palace, Brighton and Southampton.
Top four could have been done and dusted by now, if he had had another gear other than ‘Languid Tortoise.’
I’m wondering if Klopp’s comments might not goad some of them, whether consciously or not, to try to prove that they can play football, especially at home and against us. Obviously that would play into our strengths but I think Conte will keep them on the negative course he always wants. In reality, it can be quite self-defeating. Holding Liverpool to a draw at Anfield sounds impressive–until you remember that they needed to win to control their own destiny. If they had gone all out against Liverpool, they might have been badly beaten, and lost that single semi-meaningless point. Or… Read more »
Nah, Sp*rs are Two and a Half Men. Kane, Son, and a half-decent keeper.
It’s actually Batman, Robbin and Uncle Alfred
Mice, not men.
Great comments from Arteta, dismissing the ‘pressure’ (which, let’s face it, will be almost exclusively on the shoulders of the Scum bags – they simply have to win – a defeat or even a draw is of no use to them) and focusing on the belief. Come on lads. You smashed Chelsea at the Bridge. You beat United at home and you came away from West Ham with all three points, despite all the crap about ‘banana skins’ being bandied about. Come out there fighting with your tails up, full of confidence. Don’t be frightened of those cunts, because that’s… Read more »
Mikel – ““Whatever we do, it’s with the door closed. We’ll continue to do that.”
Amazon Camera Crew – “Hello? We’re trapped in the elevator, is anyone there? Hellllo?”
I am so nervous for this game, so nervous I can’t watch it. If we lose when I watch I superstitiously believe it was my fault for watching. Hope we win and hope all your fingernails and hearts survive the ordeal.
This is the one game where twice a season I wish I was on the moon when it was played
A draw is a very tasty result too.
Win the game tomorrow. Then I’d love to see the younger players who have made on the bench have a run of a couple of games. It will be invaluable experience for the likes of Patino, Azzez, Flores, Hutchinson.
The boys knows what is at stake. The final is tomorrow. Nothing less than a victory for us because, we are the GUNNERS and we must Gun Down sh*tspurs tomorrow
The fact that we can secure Champions League football, and at the same time exclude that lot from it, is just fucking crazy i tell ya!! 🤯🤪 Im not counting on it just for my hearts sake, but still. Imagine that hahaha fucking COYG!!
Also, wtf does Amazon know that we dont huh!? 🤷🏽♂️😂 That’s some next level foresight man! I hope the person that insisted on Arsenal being the next big footie docu gets a big, big raise 👏🏽🍻 cheers to you and thank you, whoever you are! 😉
Now i gotta go take a Tottnum.
May have to take a sleeping pill or something so I won’t have to watch.
Nerves in over-drive