Even though Tottenham have enjoyed a superb start to the season, only one of Ange Postecoglou’s in-form stars earn a place in our combined XI with north London rivals Arsenal, who they face at the Emirates on Sunday.
GK: David Raya (Arsenal)
The Raya/Ramsdale debate has been intense, hasn’t it? Guglielmo Vicario has been good for Spurs since joining from Empoli this summer, but he is not ahead of both Arsenal goalkeepers in the combined XI pecking order.
RB: Ben White (Arsenal)
It feels harsh leaving out nearly every Spurs starter and Pedro Porro is one of the most difficult omissions. Many worried about his ability to play as a full-back and he has adapted with little fuss.
Despite this, he has not done enough to prove he is better than White…yet.
CB: William Saliba (Arsenal)
The best central defender both teams have to offer.
CB: Gabriel (Arsenal)
Gabriel vs Cristian Romero was a very, very tough call. On another day, it might have been the latter, who seems to have matured quite a lot under Ange Postecoglou.
LB: Oleksandr Zinchenko (Arsenal)
Takehiro Tomiyasu being fully fit for once has given Mikel Arteta the luxury of offloading some of Zinchenko’s minutes on the pitch, which is great news considering the Ukrainian’s own injury troubles.
Destiny Udogie is another Spurs man unfortunate to miss out. Judging by his form this term, he will be in the next one. He is a top, top player.
DM: Declan Rice (Arsenal)
Yves Bissouma is a man possessed under Big Ange, but he is not Declan Rice, is he?
CM: Martin Odegaard (Arsenal)
The Gunners captain is going to make every single Arsenal – Spurs combined XI until at least 2028.
CM: James Maddison (Tottenham)
Here he is…our only Spurs inclusion.
Maddison and Kai Havertz have different qualities but looking at the former’s start to life in the white half of north London, you have to wonder why Arteta didn’t take a punt on him for £20million less than the German.
RW: Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)
Saka is simply world class. There is not much to say about him that hasn’t already been said.
ST: Gabriel Jesus (Arsenal)
“But Richarlison starts ahead of Jesus for Brazil,” we hear you cry. We are here to tell you…we don’t care.
Jesus’ technical ability is off the charts, and while Richarlison may have turned a corner after his crucial cameo against Sheffield United, he is not on the same level as his international teammate at this moment in time.
LW: Gabriel Martinelli (Arsenal)
Is Heung-min Son hard done by here? Probably not. He has not done enough over the last 12 months to prove he is still one of the best wingers in the Premier League. All the while Martinelli has gone from strength to strength under Arteta.
The Brazilian may not be fit to play on Sunday, and even if he is, Arteta will probably stick with Leandro Trossard, who is in red-hot form.