Tottenham 2 Arsenal 2 analysis: Five things we learnt from White Hart Lane

Analysis

Tom Collomosse
White Hart Lane
Saturday 05 March 2016 16:00
Comments

1) Arsenal are prepared to adapt. For years, Arsene Wenger has been accused of refusing to adapt to the opposition. He went some way to contradicting that criticism by guiding his team to wins over Manchester City and Bayern Munich in recent years, but his starting XI showed the respect the Frenchman now has for Spurs.

Mohamed Elneny was drafted in for his first league start in central midfield alongside Francis Coquelin to create a strong barrier in the centre.

2) Tottenham may miss Danny Rose. After a quiet start to the season, the Tottenham full-back is beginning to regain his best form. He was a constant attacking threat on the left throughout the first half, keeping Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin on his toes.

He was effective after the break, too, before appearing to pick up a knock that left him helpless when Bellerin played in Sanchez for Arsenal’s second goal. Rose was replaced by Ben Davies and will hope to return in time to fight for a place in the England squad later this month.

3) Mohamed Elneny is ready. What a time to make your Premier League debut – in the feverish atmosphere of a north London derby. But the Egyptian midfielder showed a solid temperament, fine positional sense, good vision and accomplished technique, although he faded as time ticked on.

Signed from Basel in January, Elneny had featured only three times before this match but he should expect to play more regularly during the closing weeks of the season.

4) Eric Dier needs to be careful. Operating in front of the back four, Dier has been crucial to Tottenham’s success this season. His unselfish play has allowed the full-backs to present such an attacking threat but perhaps Dier makes a few too many ‘tactical’ fouls.

Dier was lucky not to receive a second booking for a clear infringement against Olivier Giroud and if he is booked again in Spurs’ next league fixture, he will miss the following two.

5) Never doubt the best strikers. Both Harry Kane and Alexis Sanchez had quiet matches but when it mattered, they delivered. Neither man looks on top form yet with such scoring instinct, it is very hard to keep them quiet. Kane’s was a beauty, a swerving effort from an unfavourable angle that deceived David Ospina and went in off the post.

While Sanchez’s finish was not quite so spectacular, it was still a fine piece of work from a master marksman.

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