On December 5th, Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal will battle it out in the first North London Derby of the season. The bitter rivals couldn’t have had more different starts to the current campaign. José Mourinho’s Spurs are top of the Premier League table, and have been unbeaten since the opening day of the season. Mikel Arteta’s Gunners are currently 12th in the table, some seven points behind their neighbours.
If you’re looking to bet on the North London Derby, you’ll find that Spurs are the overwhelming favourites, but with matchday just over a week away, let’s take a look at three players that turned out for both Tottenham and Arsenal.
Campbell played in 21 North London Derbies, having begun his professional career at White Hart Lane. During his time in the white half of the capital, his only silverware was the League Cup in 1998-99. While he was a club favourite during his time at Spurs, in the summer of 2001, that quickly changed. His contract expired and he was signed by Arsenal on a free transfer. When it comes to the Spurs connection, you’ll find their fans add his name to every list of traitors going. His first spell at Highbury was largely successful, and in his debut season, Campbell was part of the squad to complete the Premier League and FA Cup double. Alongside Kolo Touré at the back, Campbell went on to become an influential member of the ‘Invincibles’ squad, and the Gunners clinched the Premier League title on their rivals’ patch – but he left the Gunners at the end of their final season at Highbury, before returning for a second spell in 2010.
Ahh, William Gallas. A man that was loathed by pretty much every set of fans he had turned out for. He arrived at Arsenal in 2006, surrounded by controversy, following speculation that he threatened to score own goals for Chelsea, if they wouldn’t let him leave – something he has always denied. He spent four seasons with the red half of the capital, and again, his time was marred by controversies – both on-the-pitch and behind the scenes with club personnel. He left in particularly bitter circumstances, having demanded higher wages, which Arsenal could not fulfil and so he left – and joined Tottenham. He captained both clubs, and after leaving Spurs, he waved goodbye to the Premier League, and moved to Australia.
Adebayor is the most recent player to turn out for both clubs, having first played for Arsenal (2006-09), before joining Tottenham (2011-15) – while staying in the Premier League at Manchester City between spells in North London. The Togolese striker was loathed for years by the White Hart Lane faithful, with Adebayor regularly scoring in these crunch matches. He first joined Spurs on loan, while at Manchester City and the move came as a complete surprise to the fans. But he made the switch permanent at the end of that campaign – and came back to haunt his former club. While he didn’t win trophies with either club, Adebayor is the only player to score for both Arsenal and Tottenham in the North London Derby. Most interestingly, it was his goal (and that celebration – see below!) for Manchester City against Arsenal that will forever incense the Gunners.
🔟 years ago today…
Emmanuel Adebayor ran the length of the Etihad pitch to celebrate a vital Man City goal in front of the fuming Arsenal fans 😡 pic.twitter.com/n025qM9GNw
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) September 12, 2019