Tottenham Hotspur earned the bragging rights in the capital over Arsenal with Son Heung-min and Harry Kane giving Spurs a 2-0 win
Arsenal midfield enforcer Thomas Partey has been criticised by Sky Sports pundits Alex Scott and Graeme Souness for walking off the pitch shortly before Tottenham’s second goal in the 2-0 north London derby win.
Partey, who had been struggling with a thigh injury for a number of weeks, limped over to the dugouts with Arsenal in possession, but it meant he left a huge gap in midfield for Giovani Lo Celso to stroll into as Spurs regained the ball and launched a counter attack.
The Argentina international then found Kane who finished past Bernd Leno to hand Spurs a comfortable advantage at the break.
Scott, who made 140 appearances for the England women’s national team during her career, slammed Partey’s decision to leave his position, highlighting the role he played in handing the hosts their second goal.
“You always have to think of defence in attack,” she told Sky Sports during the half-time break. “To be exposed like this, four vs two should never happen. This is how Spurs have been all season.
Even if you’ve got an injury, you wait, you don’t leave your position. The fact that Arteta is pushing you to get back in because you’ve left that space makes it easier for Tottenham to expose you, how they have, how easily they’ve broken down Arsenal.
What we’re seeing here is a team that’s well-drilled, everyone knows what they’re doing. Whereas, Arsenal, it’s all kind of off the cuff and no-one understands what’s going on.”
Former Liverpool midfielder Souness also hit out at Granit Xhaka for failing to effectively cope with the situation.
“Leaders don’t allow that to happen on a football field,” Souness added. “If he’s injured, he’s injured, he’s screaming at people telling them he’s injured.