The Gunners raced into a 3-0 lead courtesy of goals from Emile Smith Rowe in the 12th minute, Pierre Emerick Aubameyang in the 27th minute and Bukayo Saka in the 34th minute before Son Heung-Min pulled one goal back for Spurs in the 79th minute.
The performance was reminiscent of the days when Arsenal's greatest manager Arsene Wenger was in charge of the club. For the 22 years reign of the French manager, Arsenal was synonymous with a beautiful and fluid attacking football with young players and it was exhilarating to watch at times.
Arsene Wenger rarely changed his philosophy even when losing and that is one of the qualities that make him a legendary figure in the football world. When Arsene Wenger stepped down from the club in 2018, there was a huge concern from the fanbase over what the club's footballing identity would be.
There were questions like, would Arsenal move back to a defensive philosophy which they were known for before Arsene Wenger arrived in 1996? (flashback to the days of "one-nil to the Arsenal), would Arsenal hire a defensive manager like Jose Mourinho? Would there be any sort of attacking football at the Emirates Stadium again?
These questions raged through the fanbase who had already become accustomed to "Wengerball" for 22 years. Unai Emery was appointed to succeed Arsene Wenger but his reign ended in a sack after he failed to unite the dressing room and strike a balance between defending and attacking.
Then Mikel Arteta arrived to replace Unai Emery in December 2019 and won the FA Cup and Community Shield. But the fans weren't satisfied with the defensive mindset that was employed to win the Cups.
Last season, a combination of laboured football without creativity, errors, red cards, and failure to achieve European qualification lead to a section of the fanbase calling for Mikel Arteta to be sacked.
This season started with three straight defeats to Brentford FC, Chelsea and Manchester City and the calls for the Spanish manager to be sacked got louder. After beating Norwich City and Burnley FC with 1-0 scorelines, Arsenal needed a big performance in the North London Derby to convince the fans.
Then out of the blue, Arsenal delivered a performance that even Arsene Wenger would have been proud of. A blitzing performance surprised Tottenham supporters that some even left the Stadium before the half-time whistle.
Then a game management strategy in the second half to close out the win and a starting lineup full of young players and academy graduates. It was reminiscent of the footballing identity that Arsene Wenger brought to the club in 1996 before departing in 2018.
Arsenal hasn't yet recaptured the entirety of Arsene Wenger's footballing identity, but the performance against Tottenham proved that at least, some of that identity was recaptured.
The fans would surely be hoping that this identity will stay for a long time.
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