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Arteta - We must control the occasion

Alexis, Francis Coquelin and Aaron Ramsey celebrate

Captain Mikel Arteta says the players must "control the occasion" when Arsenal meet Tottenham in the north London derby this weekend. 

Writing in his captain's notes for the matchday programme on Sunday, the skipper believes discipline will be one of the determining factors in the intense heat of the derby.

 

"There will be a big atmosphere, the tempo of the game will be high and there will be tackles going in, so you have to make the right decisions on the pitch, otherwise you can cost your team," Arteta said.

 

"It's important for players to control the occasion. We have a lot of experienced players though, and most of us have played in the derbies before.

"We know how Pochettino's teams play - they are very physical, they will try to press us high up and put us under pressure. They get a lot if bodies in the box, so we expect a tough game."

Arteta, who is targeting a return to full fitness in time for the weekend's clash, added that it is essential for Arsenal to continue their excellent home record if they are to compete for honours this season.

"Both teams are on a good run in the Premier League, we are both playing well so it should be a great game.

"But we are the home side so we need to be dominant, we need to win the game.

"For me the most important thing is that we continue our run at home. If you want to win the Premier League, your home form is absolutely vital."

 

Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur - programme cover

Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur - programme cover

 

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