The pre-game handshake
It has been a crazy up and down season of emotions for Arsenal fans. The highs have been great and the lows have been miserable. Unfortunately, this has led to some divisions and bickering between supporters.
One thing that always unites Arsenal fans, however, is the North London derby. Nothing brings people together like a common enemy, and the rivalry between Arsenal and Spurs goes back over 100 years.
Going in to Sunday's match against Tottenham, Arsenal fans were even more tense than usual. For the first time in the Arsene Wenger era, Spurs have a chance to finish above the Gunners in the Premier League table. The last time this happened was in 1995. A Tottenham win would widen the gap between the two teams at 13. An Arsenal win would bring the point difference down to seven.
Leading up to the game, the "Twitterverse" was abuzz with trash talk and pre-game predictions. One of the best things about Twitter is the ability to connect with football fans from all over the world. The "Gooner Family" on Twitter is vast and allows for some great banter between supporters.
The pre-match trash talking between Spurs and Arsenal fans was filling my Twitter time line, and I took note of some of the comments as the game progressed.
So here is a sampling of the commentary on the North London Derby, courtesy of Twitter.
Emirates Stadium hosted the latest North London Derby
With the media going on and on about a power shift in North London, the pre-game comments found Tottenham fans confident and Arsenal supporters defiant.
Saha gives Spurs the early lead
Things got off to a shaky start for Arsenal as they went down by one goal in the fourth minute. Louis Saha's shot took a deflection off of defender Thomas Vermaelen and past goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny.
@MartinArsenalFC Ugh. Awful, awful defending—how in the world did Saha get so much space?
Adebayor converts the penalty to give Spurs a 2-goal lead
A controversial penalty was awarded to Tottenham in the 34th minute as Gareth Bale went down easily in the box trying to pass Szczesny. Replays showed there was no contact but referee Mike Dean awarded the penalty, and Emmanuel Adebayor gave Spurs a two-goal lead.
@thespursweb 2-0! We want 3, we want 3!
(It must be noted that Piers Morgan is universally reviled by Arsenal fans and jumps on and off the band wagon like a gymnast.)
Sagna before scoring Arsenal's first goal
@MikelArteta08 Gooooooallll!!!!! Bacary Sagna you beauty!!!!!!!!! Get in. What a header. Arsenal 1-2 Sp*rs!
Darren Lewis @MirrorDarren Nice header from Sagna to make it 2-1. A horrible afternoon for Walcott though. Surely he won't be out for the second half.
(Remember what he's said as the game progresses!)
Robin van Persie scored the equalizer
Just three minutes later and the game was tied, as Robin van Persie curled a beautiful shot into the net. It was 2-2 at the half.
@BoboChubbles19 RVP with a wonder goal 2-2 WHAT A GAME
A rejuvenated Rosicky gave Arsenal the lead
Arsenal came out attacking in the second half, as Tomas Rosicky gave Arsenal the lead 3-2 in the 51st minute. Rosicky has been on fire of late, and the goal was definitely deserved.
@thfc Arsenal 3 - 2 spurs. This isn't right
@MattCarr85 What a come back. I'm so proud to be a Gooner
@th14Renato The "Best midfield in the league" says talkSPORT. Just got owned by Song, Arteta and Rosicky
Walcott turned the jeers to cheers
Theo Walcott has taken a lot of abuse lately from Arsenal fans for some less than stellar performances. In fact, some were calling for him to be taken off following the first half.
Walcott proved them wrong when he put the ball over Friedel and gave Arsenal a 4-2 lead in the 65th minute.
@Spurred_On Ashamed to say I walked out of the pub at 4-2 this afternoon. The people of Islington don't take kindly to Spurs fans. Kudos to Arsenal2day
Jamie Sanderson @YoungGunsBlog Arsenal are motoring now. Walcott, so short of confidence earlier, now makes it 4-2. Sensational come back.
Southern Gooner @MartinArsenalFC Theo! 4-2! Great counterattacking goal. Brilliant hold-up play & assist from RvP, and great finish. Well, wow.
Walcott is mobbed by his teammates
Walcott wasn't done proving his critics wrong. Three minutes after his first goal, he bagged a second and gave the Gunners a 5-2 lead in the 68th minute.
Martin Moran @winerepublic 2-5! Bad day at office 4 spurs. Hopefully we'll still finish 3rd and top London team
Darren Lewis @MirrorDarren Theo Theo Theo. Ram those taunts down those Arsenal fans throats. Slaughtered him for so long and now he has made if five! AFC 5 THFC 2
(FYI, Darren Lewis was slaughtering him as well. Check out his comments in slide number five.)
A two-goal deficit became a 5-2 victory, and bragging rights for the day went to the red half of North London. Tottenham still lead their rivals by seven points, but a win in the derby is always a source of pride. Likewise, a loss to your closest competitors is hard to take.
@Gooner_66 51 years without a title. Let's make that 5-2.