Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Paul Merson predicts where Arsenal and Tottenham will finish in 2022/23 season

Paul Merson predicts where Arsenal and Tottenham will finish in 2022/23 season

Arsenal, according to Paul Merson, will finish fourth in the Premier League next season, ahead of Tottenham Hotspur.

The Gunners narrowly missed out on a place in next season’s Champions League after finishing fifth in the table, two points behind their bitter north London rivals.

Arsenal strengthened their squad this summer with the additions of Gabriel Jesus, Fabio Vieira, Marquinhos, and Matt Turner as Mikel Arteta seeks to lead his team back into the Champions League places for the first time since 2016.

Spurs, on the other hand, have been busy in the summer window, bringing in Ivan Perisic, Yves Bissouma, Fraser Forster, Richarlison, and Clement Lenglet as the Lilywhites prepare for their first full season under Antonio Conte.

Former Arsenal midfielder Merson believes that the Gunners will have an advantage over their local rivals in the race for the top four next season, primarily because Spurs will be competing at a high level in the Champions League.

Writing in his column for Sportskeeda, Merson said: “I’ll put Manchester United in the reckoning for a place in the top four because they are a massive club, but they haven’t done enough business at this point in time to stand a chance of securing Champions League football, so it should be between Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal.

“If I had to pick one of the two north London sides, I’ll have to go with Arsenal. Tottenham’s participation in the Champions League this season could be an issue for them, as they’ll have a bunch of tough midweek games to cater to in between their Premier League commitments.

“They don’t really have a big squad, which could make all the difference. Arsenal, on the other hand, should be able to manage their domestic commitments as the Europa League isn’t that high in terms of quality, at least in comparison to the Champions League.”

Merson also revealed that he is a “massive fan” of Tottenham signing Perisic and he is tipping the 33-year-old Croatia international to be one of Spurs’ key players next term.

Perisic scored eight goals and made seven assists in 35 Serie A games for Inter Milan last season.

He continued: “I keep going on and on about this, but I’m a massive fan of Ivan Perisic. This guy works as hard as anyone and has the talent to hold his ground against some of the best players in the world – that is some recipe for a player.

“He’s an international footballer who works as hard as someone who has come from non-league football into the big leagues, indicating that he’s got the work-ethic to complement his wonderful natural ability.

“Perisic has played for multiple big teams across Europe’s top five leagues and remains a key player for Croatia, so I expect him to be a huge hit for Tottenham.”

Paul Merson predicts where Arsenal and Tottenham will finish in 2022/23 season

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