Paul Merson backs Arsenal to finish above Tottenham this season

Arteta’s side have endured a tough start to the season (Picture: Getty Images)

Ahead of Sunday’s crunch north London derby, Paul Merson has backed Arsenal to finish above their bitter rivals Tottenham in the Premier League this season.

Both sides have endured testing starts to the new campaign, with the Gunners losing their opening three matches, but winning back-to-back games against Norwich and Burnley.

Across north London, Spurs won their first three games on the spin, however, they have been beaten 3-0 in their last two matches by Crystal Palace and Chelsea.

Nuno experiences his first north London derby on Sunday (Picture: Getty Images)

Sunday’s clash at the Emirates affords Mikel Arteta’s side the opportunity to go level on points with Spurs should they win.

But looking further beyond this weekend’s game, Arsenal hero Merson thinks his former side will finish higher than the Lilywhites.

He told Sky Sports: ‘The team he [Arteta] picked [against Burnley] was all forward-thinking players, it was like, ‘we’re not going to get in a battle here with Burnley, we’ve got to try and play our way out of this, there’s no point playing all the big boys and hit it long’, because there’s only one winner: Burnley, they play it every week.

‘He went out and tried to play football. I thought they were very, very comfortable.

‘I’ve seen them win there many a time at Burnley, it’s a good hunting ground for them, but they struggled and nicked a goal, and you think, ‘how have they won that?’

‘I thought they [Arsenal] were majorly comfortably. It was a good result.

‘If you’re asking me, I think Arsenal finish above Tottenham.’

MORE : Mikel Arteta gives Granit Xhaka and Thomas Partey fitness updates ahead of Arsenal’s clash against Tottenham

MORE : Mikel Arteta warned not to make ‘ridiculous’ decision for Arsenal vs Spurs

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