Arsenal must be on Spurs' tail: Emery

LONDON • Unai Emery believes the opportunity to cut the gap to Tottenham to just one point in the Premier League will be a "big motivation" for his players ahead of tomorrow's north London derby.

Arsenal warmed up for the clash at Wembley with a 5-1 home trouncing of Bournemouth, courtesy of goals from Mesut Ozil, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Laurent Koscielny, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette, and the Gunners manager urged his team to "take the opportunity like today, these three points".

The Spaniard told reporters: "They are still ahead of us in the table, and it's difficult to win there, but it's a good test."

Fourth-placed Arsenal currently have 56 points, four behind Spurs.

Emery was non-committal about whether Ozil, who impressed after making his first league start since Jan 29, would start tomorrow.

He added: "I'm going to watch the match back and Tottenham's, and after that, I will decide our game plan with every player."

Like Ozil, Romelu Lukaku has not played as much as he would have liked under caretaker boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, but the Belgium striker "grabbed his chance" with a brace to end his nine-game barren run as Manchester United eased to a 3-1 win at Crystal Palace.

Ashley Young added a third and the Red Devils secured a club-record eighth straight away win.

Solskjaer singled out Lukaku and Luke Shaw for praise after United stretched their unbeaten league run to 11 games under him.

He said: "Shaw is in a good vein of form at the moment. Lukaku has been putting a shift in for the team... he was a No. 9 again today."


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 01, 2019, with the headline 'Arsenal must be on Spurs' tail: Emery'. Print Edition | Subscribe