Premier League Odds, Picks, Predictions: Can Tottenham Down Arsenal in North London Derby? (Thursday, May 12)
Getty Images. Pictured: Arsenal teammates celebrate a goal against Leeds United.
- Tottenham hosts rival Arsenal in Thursday's North London derby that has massive Premier League implications.
- Both outfits are fighting for the English top flight's fourth Champions League berth, with the Gunners favored to land it.
- Avery Zimmerman breaks down the matchup below and explains why he's backing Arsenal to get a result.
Spurs vs. Arsenal Odds
|Over/Under||2.5 (-120 / -105)|
|Day | Time||Thursday | 2:45 p.m. ET|
|How To Watch||USA Network | fuboTV|
|Odds updated via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.|
Tottenham and Arsenal have been battling for weeks in search of the fourth and final Champions League spot granted to the Premier League. And they’ll finally meet Thursday for a massive fixture with only three league games left this campaign.
As it stands, the Gunners are four points clear of Spurs and the significant favorites to beat their North London rivals to that spot. Arsenal is sitting at -290 odds, while Tottenham enters as a +230 underdog to reach the top four.
That said, this is where I find value in the showdown that will play a decisive role in determining whether each team’s 2021-22 league campaign was a success or failure.
Spurs Seeking Champions League Berth
All it takes is a few poor results to be set back in the English top flight and that’s what has happened to Tottenham in recent weeks.
Over their last four games, Spurs has amassed just five of the available 12 points, losing to Brighton & Hove Albion on the road and drawing with Brentford before beating Leicester City. Of course, it’s hard to fault Tottenham for tying Liverpool at Anfield, but even in that position a win would’ve been a massive result, while the stalemate didn’t do much.
Tottenham has no one to blame but itself either, as it was at an expected-goal deficit in the two draws and the loss. Even in its 4-0 win over Aston Villa prior to the recent four-game stretch, Spurs were actually at an xG deficit, highlighting the team’s struggles.
Arsenal has been on the exact opposite end of the spectrum, and that’s why it is in the position it is ahead of Tottenham. Fortunately for Spurs, they have a chance to get themselves right back into the top-four picture with a victory.
Arsenal Trying to Fend Off EPL Rivals
As mentioned above, this Arsenal team has gone on an incredibly clutch stretch that has separated it from Tottenham.
Strong wins over Chelsea and Manchester United were compounded by one-goal victories over West Ham United and Leeds United. Outside of the last time in that quartet, you’re talking about top-seven teams. So, to win four on the bounce is no joke, particularly considering the Gunners were the better team in each game.
The visiting side hasn’t participated in the Champions League since the 2016-17 campaign, and a return to Europe’s biggest stage would be a major achievement for a team that played in 19 consecutive iterations of the competition from 1998 to 2017.
Getting there doesn’t require a result from this game, but a draw or better would all but ensure that Arsenal will finish the league in fourth place.
Betting Analysis & Pick
While the squad that desperately needs a result is Tottenham, I’m not comfortable backing an out-of-form side to turn it on in a game that matters the most.
Particularly considering that Spurs’ home xG/game differential is 0.19 and Arsenal’s is 0.05 on the road this season, backing the hosts becomes a more difficult task. Take into account recent form and it’s hard to swallow.
The Gunners have posted an average 0.7 xG differential over their last three away fixtures, plus Ben White might return for an added boost to the back line.
All in all, with a fairly small amount of juice, I’ll take my chances on a squad clicking in crucial moments over a team relying on a singular player — Heung-min Son Heung-min — to provide all the inspiration.
Pick: Arsenal +0.5 (-130)