Paul Merson predicts Tottenham v Arsenal, states what would have shocked Spurs
By Amir Mir
Paul Merson has backed Tottenham to beat Arsenal 3-1 in their Premier League clash on Sunday afternoon at White Hart Lane.
Mauricio Pochettino’s team beat Crystal Palace 1-0 on Wednesday night at Selhurst Park, with Christian Eriksen’s long-range effort being the difference in the game.
Merson believes Sam Allardyce’s team would have “shocked” Spurs, who perhaps felt that they had to “just turn up” to win.
Nonetheless, they managed to pick up a much-needed three points, which has helped them reduce the gap to leaders Chelsea to four points.
Former Aston Villa midfielder Merson offered his thoughts ahead of the match and why he cannot back Arsenal to win.
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“Credit to Arsenal for that performance in the FA Cup semi-final against Man City. I didn’t see it coming,” Merson told Sky Sports. “But I cannot bring myself to back them to beat Tottenham on Sunday. I weigh it up and think, where do Arsenal win this game?
“Alexis Sanchez needs the match of his life, Mesut Ozil needs to have an unbelievable performance, and it needs to go their way on the day.
“Spurs maybe felt they just had to turn up at Palace and I think Big Sam’s team shocked them a little bit. They must have got a rollicking at half-time.
“In the end, they deserved to win and it was a massive three points. I can’t believe I’m saying this but I’m going 3-1 to Spurs this weekend. There’s a long way to go in this title race.”
Arsene Wenger’s side were also in action in midweek as they narrowly beat Leicester City 1-0, with Robert Huth’s own goal being the difference on the night.
Those three points keep their hopes of finishing in the Champions League places alive as they are currently four points behind fourth-placed Manchester City in the table.
It will be a difficult game for the Gunners, who have been criticised for their poor performances this season, particularly away from home.
Defeats at Manchester City, Everton, Liverpool and Crystal Palace has seen the pressure mount on under-fire Wenger.
Now, the Frenchman has the task of beating a Spurs side that is unbeaten on home soil during this campaign.