Tottenham have their Premier League match with West Ham tonight, but Gareth Bale has hinted this weekend that the squad have in the back of their minds the clash with North London rivals Arsenal next Sunday.
“I think five or 10 years ago Arsenal were always miles ahead of Tottenham but that has changed in recent years, Over the past few seasons we have closed that gap and I think now we have overtaken them on the pitch. I think we have the stronger squad."
Now if Bale is asked about a topic in an interview he is right to attempt to answer it, but he may just have piled more pressure on himself and his teammates.
Arsenal are going through their troubles, but Bale would probably be advised to remember that the last two times the teams clashed 'on the pitch' - where he asserts Spurs have overtaken the Gunners - they have been well beaten 5-2.
The gap in the Premier League stands at one point, but if Spurs win their game in hand at Upton Park tonight they will re-extend it to four.
So while Bale may feel technically correct in what he is saying, it's likely he felt the same way this time last year, when the Gunners were twice as far behind.
Being confident is one thing, and if Spurs can back it up then Bale will feel satisfied he was right to speak out, but in doing so, it appears as though he is tempting fate and setting himself up for a fall.
In fact it appears that by way of his comments, he has effectively written Arsene Wenger's team talk for the derby for him.
The Arsenal manager would be advised to make clear to recall to his players, Bale's claims that Spurs have overtaken them, before kick-off to give his side extra incentive to prove him wrong; as if they didn't need enough motivation to win already.
If you were AVB would you be happy with Bale making such claims before a big match? How do you feel about it? Arsenal fans is Bale setting himself up for a fall?
image: © Jan S0L0