The weekend’s Premier League action kicks off with the 192nd edition of the North London Derby as Arsenal and Tottenham continue their endless tussle for dominance and bragging rights.
North London Derby: Who makes up an Arsenal/Tottenham combined XI?
Pulse Sports presents a combined XI of Arsenal and Tottenham players ahead of this weekend’s North London Derby
The hosts, Arsenal sit top of the Premier League while Spurs are just a point behind which indicates a close encounter at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.
But with both teams currently playing well, what would a combined XI look like based on current form?
North London combined XI
The team is selected on current form and set up in a 3-4-1-2 formation because it best accommodates the deserving players.
There are seven Arsenal players selected and four from Tottenham to make up the XI, an indication of how good the Gunners have been this season.
Aaron Ramsdale (GK)
Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale gets the nod over Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris as he has three clean sheets in seven games compared to Lloris’ two.
William Saliba (RCB)
French centre-back Wiliam Saliba has been immense since returning from his loan spell and has managed to establish himself as one of the best central defenders in English football.
Saliba leads all defenders in recoveries with 60 in seven games and also scored two goals already.
Eric Dier (CB)
Eric Dier has had a great start to the season for Tottenham, turning out to be an unexpectedly central figure in Antonio Conte’s defence.
Gabriel Magalhaes (LCB)
Another Arsenal defender Gabriel Magalhaes makes the list due to his impressive displays so far as a key part of Arsenal’s defensive excellence.
Ivan Perisic (RWB)
Croatian veteran Ivan Perisic plays as a left wing-back for Tottenham but he features on the right in this team because neither Emerson Royal nor Ben White have been impressive enough to nail down the spot.
Oleksandr Zinchenko (LWB)
Arsenal’s Oleksandr Zinchencko is currently injured but he did enough in the four games he played while fit to warrant inclusion in the team.
Thomas Partey (CM)
The calming influence of Thomas Partey and the solidity he brings to the Arsenal team is enough reason for him to be considered among the best defensive midfielders in the Premier League.
Pierre-Emile Hojberg (CM)
Hojberg performs similar duties to Partey for Tottenham, which is exemplified by the fact he has played every single minute of Premier League action for Spurs this season, returning two goals and an assist.
Martin Odegaard (AM)
Arsenal’s captain and midfield maestro Martin Odegaard has been the creative heartbeat of Arteta’s team but this season he has stood out for his goals, three in six games so far.
Harry Kane (CF)
Perhaps the most obvious name on the combined XI, Harry Kane has scored six goals in seven league games so far, a total only bettered by Manchester City’s Erling Haaland.
Gabriel Jesus (CF)
Brazilian striker Gabriel Jesus only just joined Arsenal this summer but it hasn’t taken him long to become the talisman they have desperately needed.
Only four players have scored more Premier League goals than Arsenal’s number nine this season so far.
Manager and big omissions
Arsenal have been better than Tottenham this season albeit marginally which is why Mikel Arteta would coach this completely hypothetical team.
It also helps that the Spaniard was named Premier League manager of the month for August, an honour which puts him ahead of Antonio Conte right now.
As far as omissions go, Tottenham’s Son Heung-Min is probably the most notable, especially after scoring a hat-trick in his last league game against Leicester City.
But the South Korean superstar had endured a poor start to the season and that hat-trick (which are his only goals so far) should not revise history.
On Arsenal’s side, young wingers Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka were in with a shout to make the combined XI but ultimately fell short.