Has Mikel Arteta found his best Arsenal XI?
Arsenal's Spanish manager Mikel Arteta (2nd R) hugs his players at the final whistle during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at the Emirates Stadium in London on March 14, 2021. - Arsenal won the game 2-1 (Photo by Julian Finney / POOL / AFP).

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has had a season of ups and downs. With mixed performances which has led to a mix of good and bad results, Arsenal fans started to question the Spaniard's managerial qualities.

However, after a dominant and hard fought 2-1 victory over Tottenham Hotspur, Arteta is definitely back in the good books.

After the Gunners' 12th win of the season, Arteta may have found his best XI. But could of there been any changes to the side he put out against Spurs?

The North London derby performance

Arsenal team: Leno, Tierney, Gabriel, Luiz, Soares; Saka, Odegaard, Partey, Smith Rowe, Xhaka; Lacazette.

Overall, from the first whistle to the last, Arsenal worked endlessly to secure three points against their fierce London rivals. 

After going behind due to a spectacular Erik Lamela rabona, Arteta's side bounced back, equalising through Martin Odegaard.

Odegaard's first Premier League goal came down to Arsenal's exceptional dominance down Tottenham's right hand side.

The Gunners once again had Kieran Tierney to thank after another spectacular performance, assisting the Norwegian for the leveller.

The Scotsman linked up with the rather impressive Emile Smith Rowe down the left wing, with 40% of Arsenal attacks coming from that side.

The combination between the two of Arsenal's most impressive players allowed Alexandre Lacazette and Odegaard to get into those pockets and create chances.

Nicolas Pepe also appeared in the Arsenal attack after replacing Bukayo Saka at half time, playing a crucial ball to secure Arsenal the winning penalty, scored by Lacazette.

However, did Pepe and Lacazette do enough to earn a place in Arteta's best Arsenal XI?

As well as Arsenal's attack, the defence was on top form against Jose Mourinho's Spurs. 

The Brazilian partnership between Gabriel and David Luiz has become a favourite with Arteta, and we can see why.

The experienced Luiz commanding his area accompanied with the young and talented Gabriel, has created a comfortable atmosphere compared to recent years in Arsenal's defence.

In particular, Gabriel was praised after his goal line clearance in the dying embers, saving Arsenal from sharing the points.

Overall it was a solid well rounded performance from all members of that Arsenal team. So what is Arsenal's best XI after Sunday's result?

Arteta's best Arsenal XI

GK: Leno - Arsenal's German number one has been involved in some controversial decisions in recent weeks. However, he stays in my team. Leno has saved the Gunners on multiple occasions when he has been let down by his defensive line, and has continued to perform throughout his tenure in north London.

LB: Tierney - The Scottish full back has been Arsenal's man of the moment throughout the entire of this league campaign. Whilst out injured, Arsenal fans truly learnt how much influence he has. His determination, passion, and grit brings a new energy Arsenal have missed since the likes of Patrick Viera and Martin Keown. Tierney has been unbeatable and I am looking forward to see how further he develops.

CB pairing: Luiz and Gabriel - As mentioned above, the two Brazilians have had some sensational displays at the back for Arsenal, becoming a major part of the Gunners' spine. Although Rob Holding and Pablo Mari have showed excellence, Luiz and Gabriel have been on another level and make it into my best XI.

RB: Cedric - The Portuguese defender has performed admirably since signing permanently with the Gunners. Filling in for the inconsistent Hector Bellerin, Cedric has provided Arteta with experience and fantastic defensive displays, as well as impressive attacking qualities.

CDM pairing: Partey and Xhaka - Since Partey's arrival, Xhaka has returned to his better self. After his career revival, Xhaka has created a successful partnership with his Ghanaian accomplice. Quick triangles and movement within the midfield has been missing, but since Partey's involvement it has been nothing but applaudable.

LM: Smith Rowe - His recent achievement of being called up to the England Under-21 Euro squad sums up this boy's season. Smith Rowe has had the campaign of a lifetime. His first north London derby and he still ran the show, coming close rattling the crossbar. His direct approach and confidence pushes him ahead of the likes of Pepe and Willian, rising above when needed the most. One for the future.

CAM: Odegaard - What have Arsenal done to deserve him? Since his arrival, Odegaard has been nothing but impressive. His style, similar to Mesut Ozil, brings the creative aspect to this Arsenal team that has been missed for so long. As well as his goal scoring, the Norwegian has the ability to play that killer pass, becoming a key part of Arteta's best XI.

RM: Saka - The golden boy is in the limelight at the moment due to his consistent performances throughout this season. His finishing, dribbling, and passing ability, accompanied with his three time Arsenal POTM awards, puts him at the top of the list. What else do I need to say? 

ST: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - Although the Arsenal captain was benched due to disciplinary reasons, Aubameyang still makes it into Arteta's best XI. He has recently revived his season, bouncing back from personal issues as well as bad form, wearing the shirt with pride. The Gabon international still has the ability to influence games, and as Arsenal captain, he replaces Lacazette in this Arsenal team.

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