The FA Cup is back which means there will be more of Adrian Chiles on the box, some horrible ‘magic of the cup’ cliches spouted by people like Michael Owen on Twitter, and a bucket-load of potential acca-ruining games as managers rest their stars in favour of Premier League survival.
You just can’t beat that kind of deadly football cocktail.
The standout tie of the weekend, and one game where neither manager will risk resting their biggest players, is at the Emirates were Arsenal and Tottenham go at it in a North London derby.
They are two of the most successful sides in FA Cup history, lifting the trophy a combined 18 times, but the stats suggest it will be Tottenham falling at the first hurdle on Saturday evening. Arsene Wenger’s record against the Gunners’ nearest but least-dearest on home soil is quite incredible.
- Fancy Arsenal to continue their hoodoo over Spurs at home? Check out the latest odds here:
Desktop | Mobile
- In 20 games against Tottenham on home soil, Arsene Wenger has won 70 per cent of games, and lost just once. That defeat was in 2010 when Harry Redknapp’s Tottenham side came from 2-0 down to win 3-2
- Eight of those 14 victories have been by two goals or more, with Wenger’s biggest victories being the two 5-2 thumpings in 2012
- In 13 of the 20 games there have been over 2.5 goals and in 60 per cent of the matches at Arsenal while Wenger has been at the helm, both teams have found the back of the onion bag
- The matches also tend to be quite tasty with an average of four yellow cards a game and six red cards in total in Wenger’s 20 matches
Arsenal are 10/11 to beat Tottenham which wouldn’t be a bad bet at all looking at the stats. If the merciless spending the festive season brings has left you looking for some value though it might be worth backing Arsenal -1 on the handicap at 5/2.
An even more interesting punt would be the correct scoreline of Arsenal 2-0 Tottenham. The Gunners have won 10 games on home soil this season and seven of them, including the midweek victory over Cardiff, have ended 2-0. The correct score pays a tempting 9/1.
- Can Wenger keep the run going? Get all the latest odds on Arsenal v Tottenham here:
Desktop | Mobile
- Forget the magic of the cup, here are the stats that could pocket you some winners
- New Year, New You: Five Premier League players who need to up their game
- A Look At Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal Career [Infographic]