Chris Sutton picks Saka v Kulusevski winner in ruthless claim about Arsenal, Tottenham forward lines
Chris Sutton had no doubt who wins out of Bukayo Saka and Dejan Kulusevski, and claimed one of Arsenal and Tottenham’s front lines leaves the other “for dead”.
The north London rivals will clash on Thursday night with the fate of fourth spot potentially on the line. Arsenal currently have possession of the final Champions League qualification place. What’s more, they also have a handy four-point cushion.
Yet if Tottenham were to win the pressure would be heaped back on to the Gunners who will have the resurgent Everton to contend with on final day.
Both clubs have gone back and forth in the quest for fourth spot over the course of the season and the fact both remain in the hunt owes a lot to Bukayo Saka and Dejan Kulusevski.
Saka has been Arsenal’s most consistent and creative attacker while wreaking havoc down the right. Kulusevski, meanwhile, has been a revelation since arriving from Juventus in January.
The Swede is only on loan at present, though it’s strongly expected that move will be turned permanent to the tune of £25m this summer.
And ahead of the derby clash, Chris Sutton had his say on the two clubs’ attacking prowess. In his mind, it isn’t even a contest.
“I think Spurs front line leaves Arsenal’s for dead,” Sutton told The Monday Night Club.
“There’s not one Arsenal player I could see who would get in front of Kane, Son and Kulusevski.”
When fellow co-host Micah Richards interjected and asked about Saka, Sutton added: “I prefer Kulusevski.”
Saka v Kulusevski in numbers
Choosing between Saka and Kulusevski is like picking between ice cream and pizza. Ideally, you’d have both.
The numbers suggest Saka is carrying a bigger goal threat, though that is to be expected given he drives towards goal as a left-footed right winger and causes havoc in central areas.
Saka has 11 goals and six assists to his name in 35 league matches this season. By contrast, Kulusevski has three goals and eight assists in just 15 appearances.
The Swede’s return of over one assist every two matches is truly remarkable given he’s new to the league. His impact can be compared to that of Luis Diaz at Liverpool – who himself was Tottenham’s first-choice January target.
Kulusevski is also left-footed, though the stats indicate he is more content to provide for Kane and Son. Their surges post-January would suggest Kulusevski is making the right call in that respect.
Regardless, the true prize will be securing fourth spot and both players would prioritise the team over individual accolades. Whichever player is playing Champions League football next year will be the real winner in our eyes.