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Martin Keown wants Mikel Arteta to unleash 22-year-old Arsenal star against Tottenham

Former Gooner Martin Keown wants Mikel Arteta to start phenomenal 22-year-old Arsenal star against Tottenham on Sunday

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Arsenal legend Martin Keown
Image credit: Getty Images

In what promises to be a pivotal clash, Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal are gearing up for a high-stakes north London derby this Sunday, with both teams facing critical implications in the Premier League standings.

Scheduled to unfold at a charged-up stadium, the rivalry between Spurs and the Gunners is poised to reach a fever pitch as the outcome could significantly shape the fate of either side in the ongoing Premier League campaign.

Presently occupying the fifth spot in the league table, Tottenham find themselves trailing fourth-placed Aston Villa by a margin of six points, albeit with two games in hand. Conversely, Arsenal currently leads the pack, but with Manchester City breathing down their necks and possessing a game in hand, the top spot remains precarious.

READ MORE: Arsenal get extra motivation to beat Tottenham with Premier League record in sight
Arsenal forward Gabriel Martinelli

Arsenal winger Gabriel Martinelli (Image credit: Getty Images)

Ahead of this crucial encounter, former Highbury stalwart Martin Keown has weighed in on the impending showdown, advocating for Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta to field a particular player who could potentially tilt the scales in their favour.

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The player under scrutiny is Gabriel Martinelli, who, according to Keown, has the potential to replicate the threat posed by Newcastle’s rapid attackers in Tottenham’s recent outing. 

Keown, writing in the Daily Mail, emphasised the importance of Martinelli’s blistering pace, suggesting that it could exploit Tottenham’s vulnerability to high defensive lines.

“Ange Postecoglou’s philosophy is to push players up the pitch and that inevitably leaves a high defensive line,” noted Keown. “That was dismantled in Tottenham’s last game by Newcastle’s lightning-fast forwards and, with that in mind, Arteta may pick Gabriel Martinelli to make his first Premier League start in nearly two months.”

Highlighting the synergy between Martinelli’s speed and the attacking prowess of Bukayo Saka and Martin Odegaard, Keown underscored the potential for Arsenal to capitalise on the left flank and exploit gaps in Tottenham’s defensive setup.

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