By Nick Ames

Wojciech Szczesny believes that neither of Saturday's north London derby protagonists will have recent results on their mind when they step onto the Emirates Stadium turf.

Arsenal and Tottenham have both endured some setbacks in recent weeks: the Gunners were pegged back by Fulham last weekend and their neighbours lost their last two Premier League games.

The Polish goalkeeper could return on Saturday and he believes that factors other than form will decide who comes out on top.

He told the Official Matchday Programme: “It’s a massive game, and it doesn’t really matter what form you are in when it comes around.

"Both teams have had some disappointing results recently, but it’s all about commitment in this one and I’m confident we can go out there and get the job done.

“Hopefully it can have the same effect for us that it did in February, when it really kick-started our season. It comes a little bit earlier this year, so after a frustrating couple of weeks we hope a similar thing can happen - and over a longer period.”

Szczesny is back in contention for a first-team place after spending the majority of the season sidelined through injury. Coming off the back of a European Championship campaign that was curtailed by a red card in the opening match of the tournament, it has been a frustrating time for the 22 year-old, but he believes that the events of the summer provided a valuable lesson.

“It probably made me a stronger person rather than a stronger goalkeeper,” said Szczesny.

“You can’t take a lot of good things out of it - I was sent off in what was probably one of the most important games of my life, and was half-guilty for the goal we conceded as well. But it was a learning curve for me and I think I did take strength from it.

“Before the Euros, as I said at the time, I felt physically at my best - my preparation had been fantastic, I felt really sharp and couldn’t wait, but I found out that you never know what’s around the corner. You just have to try to make the most of all the opportunities you’re given."

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16 Nov 2012