Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger believes that former Tottenham Hotspur playmaker Gylfi Sigurdsson struggled at White Hart Lane due to the pressure put on him.
The Iceland international joined Spurs in the summer of 2012 from Bundesliga outfit Hoffenheim for a reported £8.8 million fee after impressing in a loan spell with Swansea City.
The 25-year-old attacking midfielder arrived at White Hart Lane as former boss Andre Villas-Boas’s first signing for the club and there was immediate pressure placed on his head.
In a previous loan spell at Swansea he contributed to four goals and seven assists in 18 Premier League matches, but he struggled to make the same impact with Spurs.
It took almost seven months before Sigurdsson netted his first Premier League goal for the North London outfit, and he fired in just eight goals during a disappointing two-year spell.
Now back at Swansea and finding his rhythm once more, Wenger feels the Gunners’ opponent on Sunday was under too much pressure to perform at Spurs.
"Maybe he [is doing well at Swansea because he] feels he has the confidence and the time needed to express himself," he explained to the official Arsenal website.
"At Tottenham he [might have] felt a bit more under stress, a bit more under the need to perform quickly. That can explain it.”
Sigurdsson has been in fine form for the Swans this season, scoring one and assisting a further seven in 13 Premier League fixtures.
The Gunners will have to watch him carefully on Sunday as he will need no extra motivation in his bid to find the net for the first time since the opening day of the season.