Tottenham have 3 lessons to learn as formidable Arsenal factor poses Ange Postecoglou question

Home comforts could be exactly what Ange Postecoglou and his Tottenham side need after their 4-0 drubbing at Newcastle United in their last Premier League fixture. Far from their best in the north east, Spurs were duly put to the sword by their opponents as they suffered even more embarrassment at St James' Park 12 months on from their 6-1 hammering.

With their defeat and the fact they had no game last weekend playing into Aston Villa's hands in the race for Champions League football, Tottenham ideally have to return to winning ways this weekend if they are to pip their European rivals to fourth. That will be easier said than done, though, especially with a North London Derby showdown against Arsenal on the agenda.

Always a key date in the calendar regardless, there is so much more riding on this derby clash as Tottenham are targeting a Champions League finish and Arsenal have their eyes on the Premier League title. You could perhaps even look at it as the ideal game for Tottenham to go into as they look to right the wrongs of their Newcastle defeat.

"I don’t think one’s a reference point for the other," said Postecoglou in his pre-match press conference when asked about the biggest difference he wants to see between the Newcastle game and Sunday's Arsenal clash. "The Newcastle game was really disappointing for us on a number of levels. Obviously the result was poor, but the result didn’t anywhere near reach the levels we wanted to. But we’ve learned a hell of a lot from it. The players have learned a lot out of it, but irrespective of that it doesn't matter what you’ve done the previous game.

"When you’re playing such a big game - a derby - especially at this time of year when like I said there’s great meaning to the points for both clubs then what's happened previously, whether that's the immediate past or further back, becomes irrelevant. Because you know it's going to be a tough game, have a bit of an edge to it, have an atmosphere. And you've just got to make sure you get ready to match those levels with a performance."

Arsenal have been in excellent form once again this season to put themselves in with a chance of winning the Premier League title for the first time in 20 years. Currently top of the pile with four games left to play, Arsenal really need to win all of their remaining fixtures with Man City, who are one place and one point behind them, having a game in hand - against Tottenham - still to come.

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Very good on home soil after registering 13 wins from a possible 17, the Gunners' form away from the Emirates Stadium has also been a major factor in their title push. As things stand, Arteta's men are currently the best team away from home in the Premier League after obtaining 36 points from a possible 51.

That run includes 11 wins, three draws and three defeats from their 17 fixtures on the road, with only Newcastle United, Aston Villa and Fulham able to get the better of them. That in turn presents Postecoglou and Tottenham with some challenge as they bid to put a stop to their rivals' strong away form and boost their Champions League aspirations in the process.

The Lilywhites have done well on home soil this season, winning 12 and losing four of their 16 Premier League games at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Three of those defeats came towards the end of 2023 when Chelsea, Aston Villa and West Ham all registered maximum points at a time when injuries where really hurting Tottenham, with Wolves then victorious in N17 in February.

Spurs haven't been exactly convincing at home recently but they have managed to find a way to achieve maximum points against Crystal Palace, Luton Town and Nottingham Forest. They will now be looking to do likewise in such an important fixture with so much riding on it.

Not only are they coming up against a formidable Arsenal team, they are coming up against an Arsenal team who are formidable on the road. Sunday promises to be some occasion at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

It is the ideal game to bounce back from their Newcastle United humbling and boost their Champions League chances as a result.

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