Football

Arsenal favourite Alan Smith snubs Tottenham in greatest XI

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Arsenal legend Alan Smith has risked angering Tottenham fans ahead of the north London derby by only selecting four Spurs players in his greatest ever combined team.

The two fierce rivals will go head to head this weekend in the Premier League, with Arsenal holding the upper hand in recent meetings.

Encounters

The Gunners have won five of their last six encounters against Tottenham, and haven't lost at home against their great rivals since 2010. The rivalry between the two sides has grown in recent years as they jostle for Champions League qualification - and Smith may have just added fuel to the fire.

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In a feature for the Telegraph, the former Arsenal striker who made over 347 appearances for the club has opted for an XI dominated by Gunners legends including Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira.

Team

Smith opts for David Seaman in goal over iconic Spurs goalkeeper Pat Jennings, while the defence is made up of three Arsenal players, Tony Adams, Nigel Winterburn and Lee Dixon, and one Tottenham legend, David Mackay who helped them win the double in 1961.

In midfield the former forward went for Patrick Vieira alongside Paul Gascoigne and Glen Hoddle  - the only area of the pitch where Tottenham players outnumber their Arsenal counterparts. In attack there's Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry and Jimmy Greaves.

There's no room for Gareth Bale, officially the most expensive player in the world following his £85 million move to Real Madrid. Luka Modric, Ledley King, and Teddy Sheringham may have also been in with a shout but are omitted by Smith. 

Start

Arsenal have enjoyed a better start to the season than Tottenham, and currently sit in 4th place while Mauricio Pochettino's side have faded after impressing early on to sit in 9th place with seven points from five games.

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger will be hoping to have some of his key defenders back for the game at the Emirates Stadium, having been forced to field a makeshift back line in their 2-1 Capital One Cup defeat against Southampton in mid-week.

Both Mathieu Debuchy and Nacho Monreal are long-term absentees, however Kieran Gibbs and Per Mertesacker should be ready for action. Spurs meanwhile have relatively few injury worries, with Kyle Walker the only long-term injury concern.

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Topics:
Arsenal
Football
Tottenham Hotspur
Premier League

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