A simple comparison between Arsenal and Tottenham should prove the headline above.
Let’s see now:
Manager: Wenger vs Jol
Wenger and Jol both drastically changed the fortunes of the clubs once they were brought on board, but that’s where the similarity ends. Wenger’s teams are not only fun to watch but usually more attacking, mentally tough and ‘look’ capable of winning games.
Jol’s teams – more often than not, a team capable of winning matches looks nothing like it.
Arsenal wins this round.
Keeper: Robinson vs Lehmann
Robinson doesn’t win this outright, but Lehmann’s age and ability to mess things up means he loses this one. He’s past his best (although there are questions if Robinson will ever reach his best …)
Tottenham win this round.
Defense: Sagna/Toure/Gallas/Clichy vs Chimbonda/King/Kaboul/Bale
I put Kaboul ahead of Dawson, but both are quite good defenders.
Defensively Tottenham can hold their own, even though people tend to look at Gallas’ reputation as a ‘world-class defender’ and judge accordingly.
Tie for me – both Arsenal and Tottenham have quality defenders.
Midfield: Lennon/Zokora/Jenas/Malbranque vs Eboue/Silva/Fabregas/Rosicky
Apart from Lennon, Tottenham have NOTHING in their midfield that even resembles top quality. Huddlestone is raw potential, Malbranque and Jenas have talent but are limited players otherwise, and Zokora either still has a long way to go or is similarly limited and neither him nor Jol can see it.
Arsenal take this round, hands down.
Attack: Berbatov/Keane/Defoe/Bent vs Persie/Adebayor/Silva/Walcott/Bendtner
Tottenham edge it because Adebayor is average at best and apart from Persie, the other 3 still have lots to prove. Spurs strikers on the other hand have experience and quality.
I think it’s here that Tottenham are beaten, both in defense and midfield, and that’s where they really suffer in the long run.
Overall: Arsenal 3, Tottenham 2, Tie 1
If you look at the margins of Arsenal’s wins (outright) and the margins of Tottenham’s wins (just), it points to the inevitable conclusion:
Arsenal are miles ahead of Tottenham. And I hate Arsenal, so go figure.