Kevin Campbell thinks Kieran Tierney should start North London derby
Kevin Campbell has told The Highbury Squad that Kieran Tierney should start the North London derby ahead of Oleksandr Zinchenko if the two Arsenal players are fit for this weekend.
The Gunners need to pick up where they left off before the international break. Of course, Mikel Arteta’s men are currently top of the Premier League. And they are playing some of the best football in the division.
Their critics may argue that Arsenal’s fixture list has not been the most challenging. So the Gunners have a real chance to prove a massive point on Saturday when they host Tottenham.
Spurs have also made a promising start to the campaign under Antonio Conte. They are actually unbeaten in their first seven games. And the winner will be top until Sunday afternoon at least.
Arsenal have real depth this term. But due to various issues, most of Arteta’s team picks itself for this weekend. One area which may be unclear however, is at left-back.
Zinchenko has been absolutely brilliant since his summer switch to the Emirates. Tierney meanwhile, has stepped in in more recent weeks, shining against Brentford before the break.
The requirements of the position are a little less familiar for Tierney. Nevertheless, with Zinchenko playing one league game since August, Campbell suggested that the Scot should get the nod for Saturday.
“Kieran Tierney’s going to start, if he’s fit. Let’s be honest, Zinchenko hasn’t played for a while. Kieran Tierney went off, but it was more precaution, so hopefully he’s going to be alright,” he told The Highbury Squad.
“I thought Kieran Tierney against Brentford was outstanding. I really thought he was outstanding. And I think he was starting to get a grip in his own way of playing in that midfield at times. We didn’t look out of shape, we looked dominant with Kieran Tierney in the team. I thought it was his best game all season so if he’s fit, he plays. Zinchenko will probably be on the bench.”
Kieran Tierney should start the North London derby
It is a brilliant problem for Arteta to have. Previously, Tierney was absolutely vital for the Gunners. He was one of the few positives during a couple of really disappointing years for the club.
But Zinchenko is a world-class talent in his own right. And he has taken a lot of pressure off of Tierney, who has struggled to stave off injuries during his time in the Premier League.
As Campbell suggests, it may simply come down to fitness. But Arsenal could start with either in that position and cause Spurs real problems down that side of the pitch.
It is a dilemma which highlights how far Arsenal have come in the last couple of years.