Wenger points to Spurs star exits as reason for AVB style makeover

13:38 16 November 2012

Former Tottenham stars Rafael van der Vaart and Luka Modric. Photo credit: Dave Howarth/PA wire

Former Tottenham stars Rafael van der Vaart and Luka Modric. Photo credit: Dave Howarth/PA wire

PA Archive/Press Association Images

Arsene Wenger believes that Spurs have replaced flair with power but doesn’t put that solely down manager Andre Villas-Boas.

The two rivals do battle at the Emirates tomorrow on what will be the 125th anniversary of the north London derby.

Both side one on their home fixture last term but the Arsenal boss expects to face a very different side to the one that Harry Redknapp presented back in February when the Gunners ran out 5-2 winners.

The new man in charge at White Hart Lane has drawn criticism for being too cautious but Wenger isn’t convinced it’s all of the Portuguese’s making.

“I don’t think it’s specifically the change of manager that has changed the style, it’s the change of players as well,” the Frenchman said.

“To me, they look like a team that has lost two creative players with [Rafael] Van Der Vaart and [Luka] Modric.

“They are more robust, physically, and stronger in the impact and contacts.

“[They are] still very dangerous on counter attacks and on the flanks with [Gareth] Bale and [Emmanuel] Adebayor.

“They are quick, dangerous and sharp.

“They are quite physical with Sandro and [Tom] Huddlestone.”

Nevertheless, the derby fixture has provided goals galore in recent years with last season’s Emirates high-scoring win for Arsenal coming after a memorable 4-4 draw in 2008 and a 5-1 win for Spurs earlier that year.

“What does it say about the fixture?” Wenger questioned, adding: “Usually it’s a game played at a frenetic pace with two teams that go for it.

“That’s why you always see goals and they are spectacular games.

“They quality of the games has always been very good.”

The Arsenal boss also dismissed the suggestion that the 12.45pm kick-off would dampen down and ferocity.

He said: “No, I don’t think so, 12.45 is a bit of an unusual time but I like to get up in the morning and play football. They earlier the better, that’s all right for me.”

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Submit your Arsenal player ratings

Latest Arsenal news

Friday, March 27, 2015
Harry Kane of England   (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)

Harry Kane took just 80 seconds to make his mark on international football as he enjoyed a fairytale debut in England’s 4-0 win over Lithuania at Wembley.

Friday, March 27, 2015
The England players celebrate   (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)

England strode to a comfortable victory at home to Lithuania on Friday night and continued their 100 per cent record in Euro 2016 qualifying.

Friday, March 27, 2015
Mateo Kovacic of FC Inter (Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images)

Inter Milan midfielder Mateo Kovacic has suffered a cruciate knee ligament injury on international duty with Croatia, chief medic Boris Nemec confirmed.

Friday, March 27, 2015
Sami Khedira and Morgan Schneiderlin (Photos by PA)

Arsene Wenger is likely to be in the market for a holding midfield player when the summer transfer window comes around. Here are five of the top candidates.

Thursday, March 26, 2015
Roy Hodgson is set to hand Harry Kane his England debut (Pictures: Getty)

England manager Roy Hodgson has backed man-of-the-moment Harry Kane to succeed in international football - but stopped short of revealing whether he would make his debut against Lithuania.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Arsenal Transfer News