LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 08: Olivier Giroud of Arsenal holds off Eric Dier of Spurs during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at the Emirates Stadium on November 8, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Arsenal and Tottenham go to a draw in pivotal North London Derby

The North London Derby between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at Emirates Stadium ended in a pretty entertaining 1-1 draw with goals by Harry Kane and Kieran Gibbs.

The game went back and forth all 90 minutes. Things really picked up when Harry Kane broke the scoring deadlock in the 32nd minute. Kane took advantage of Laurent Koscielny having a momentary lapse in concentration and that’s not what you should be doing because someone with Harry Kane’s talent will make you pay for that every time.

The game will be noted for Arsene Wenger’s decision to play Kieran Gibbs at left mid. Whether it was by choice, or by necessity, Wenger put Gibbs at left mid and Arsenal fans certainly became increasingly uneasy at the move. That all changed four minutes later because Gibbs made a run toward goal like he had been doing this as a midfielder for years as Mesut Ozil placed a perfect cross to Gibbs’ foot. Gibbs tapped the ball into the goal and got the equalizer. The game ended in the 1-1 draw.

And can we talk about Mesut Ozil for a second? I don’t personally understand the amount of hate he gets on social media. Yeah, Spurs fans probably don’t like him, and that’s understandable, but I notice a lot of neutral fans who just don’t rate him as highly as they should. I don’t know, maybe I’m watching a different player, but it seems like Ozil is responsible for assisting on a majority of Arsenal’s goals and is the rock of the Arsenal midfield. The man has 10 assists this EPL season which is far and away in the lead (Silva has six). I get that he may have a stretch of a few games once in a while where he struggles but that doesn’t mean he’s a terrible player.

Anyway, getting off of my Mesut Ozil soapbox, both teams will probably be happy to leave with a point but they will look around them and will have wished they gotten the two additional points in order to get in a better spot in the table. With Manchester City’s 0-0 draw to Aston Villa earlier in the morning, Arsenal had an opportunity to break out into a two point lead in the EPL table. Now, there is a tight race among the top four as Man City and Arsenal are tied for first, Leicester City is third, a point behind and Man United two points behind the leaders in fourth.

Tottenham, on the other hand, are tied with West Ham in fifth and is leading the best of the rest ourside of the top four. But if you look at the table, if Tottenham had won, they would have made it a very tight five team race for first place. Tottenham would’ve still been fifth, but they would have been just three points behind Manchester City and riding a 12 game unbeaten streak. That would have been huge for Spurs.

As both teams enter into the international break, both teams should feel pretty good about themselves entering the break. They are both in a great position and are retaining their great EPL form as we creep into the busy month of December.

About Phillip Bupp

Producer/editor of the Awful Announcing Podcast and Short and to the Point. News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. Highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @phillipbupp