3. Tottenham vs West Ham
While many Irons and Spurs supporters would consider Millwall and Arsenal respectively to be their arch-enemies. However, this derby has also proven to be pretty fierce for a number of decades.
The Tottenham supporters’ condescension feeds the Hammers fans’ disdain and the bubbling animosity exists not so much for football or geographic reasons, but for how each side views the other. Spurs belittle the Irons, West Ham fights to prove their relevance. But the rivalry has nevertheless proven to be a reliable source of entertaining plot points and intriguing narratives.
2. Tottenham vs Chelsea
The rivalry between the clubs dates back to the 1967 FA Cup final. It was the competition’s first final to be contested between two teams from London. Tottenham won it 2–1. For Chelsea fans, it was a major blow to see two of their former players, Jimmy Greaves and Terry Venables, win the FA Cup with Tottenham
Since then, matches between them would often attract large attendances. It would sometimes end up in violent clashes between supporters. After an FA Cup tie in 2007, a number of fans were stabbed and hit with weapons in the street outside Stamford Bridge. This was a disturbing view into how deep the hatred runs between the two London clubs.
This boiled once again in the 2015-16 season when Chelsea put an end to the Spurs’ title challenge. All this makes Chelsea one of the biggest rivals of Tottenham Hotspur.
1. Tottenham vs Arsenal
The rivalry between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur has all that anyone could want: uncomfortably close home grounds, season-defining clashes and a long list of traitors and heroes to play with the emotions of both sets of fans. It is generally the biggest game of the season for both clubs and their fans.
As a spectacle, the north London derby is as good an advert as you could get for English football, with high-intensity football on the pitch and an infectiously loud atmosphere in the stands every time the two sides meet.
The rivalry began in 1913 when Arsenal moved their ground to north London. Fans of both clubs like to claim that they are the true “pride of north London”, but it is only after each derby that this claim can be vindicated.