MX23RW : Thursday, July 30 14:22:20| >> :120:8162:8162:
Jul 12, 2020 at 4.30pm UK at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
SpursTottenham Hotspur
Heung-min (19'), Alderweireld (81')
Lo Celso (16'), Aurier (34'), Davies (45+2'), Winks (76'), Bergwijn (87')
FT(HT: 1-1)
Lacazette (16')
Lacazette (45'), Pepe (61'), Saka (90')

Combined XI: Tottenham Hotspur vs. Arsenal

Ahead of Sunday's North London derby, Sports Mole selects its strongest combined XI using players from Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal.

A fixture between Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal this late in the season in recent years would usually mean a shootout for a Champions League spot.

On the back of disappointing campaigns for the North London rivals, however, it is a place in the top eight they are fighting for this time around.

Arsenal have at least recovered over the last few weeks by picking up 10 points from the last 12 on offer, whereas Spurs have struggled to build any sort of momentum.

Both teams possess talented squads, containing two of the best strikers in world football, but which players would make it into a combined XI?

Using only players available for Sunday's clash, Sports Mole selects the strongest hybrid side.

Combined XI: NLD

Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris has had a hit-and-miss season in many ways, but Bernd Leno is injured for this match so the Frenchman gets the nod over Emiliano Martinez.

Both teams have also let in too many goals this term, though Spurs have looked a lot more solid at the back in recent games and still boast one of the best central-defensive partnerships around in Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen.

At left-back, Arsenal will be hoping that Kieran Tierney can finally put his injury issues behind him, though he has not played near enough matches to oust Ben Davies from this side.

On the opposite flank, Serge Aurier offers far more in an attacking sense than Hector Bellerin - five goals and one assist in the league this season - so it is an all-Spurs back five.

Bukayo Saka in action for Arsenal on September 19, 2019© Reuters

There are a number of holding midfielders to choose from, but if it is consistency you are after then the options become rather more limited.

Granit Xhaka has stepped up since the restart but Dani Ceballos has been the better performer over the course of the season, while Giovanni Lo Celso has quietly gone about his business at Tottenham after adapting to English football.

The technically-gifted holding midfielders will allow the attacking players in the side to express themselves, with Bukayo Saka very much the wildcard pick.

The youngster has contributed to seven goals in his breakthrough Premier League campaign and, having showed his versatility, is handed a central spot.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has proved he can be just as much as a threat from a wide starting position, meanwhile, and quite simply has to be selected somewhere, with Son Heung-min getting the nod over the likes of Lucas Moura, Steven Bergwijn and Nicolas Pepe on the other flank.

Up top, Harry Kane may not have had the best of runs since Jose Mourinho took charge, but overlooking him for a place up top is not an option given his goalscoring record over the past six seasons.

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rhs 2.0
2Manchester CityMan City382639102356781
3Manchester UnitedMan Utd381812866363066
5Leicester CityLeicester381881267412662
6Tottenham HotspurSpurs3816111161471459
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves381514951401159
9Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd381412123939054
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle381111163858-2044
14Crystal Palace381110173150-1943
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton38914153954-1541
16West Ham UnitedWest Ham38109194962-1339
17Aston Villa3898214167-2635
RNorwich CityNorwich3856272675-4921

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