After a loss and two frustrating draws, Spurs will hope to get back to winning ways this Sunday, as West Bromwich Albion visit White Hart Lane.
It all started so well for Mauricio Pochettino with four consecutive wins. A drop off was inevitable as the new boss finds his best eleven and gets the team playing his way.
Tottenham played well against Sunderland and were unlucky not to take all three points. The trip to Serbia was always going to be tough, with a long journey, a partisan crowd and a terrible pitch. At least with only Lloris starting both games, the team should not be adversely affected by their efforts in midweek.
West Brom missed out on relegation last year by the skin of their teeth, with just one place and three points between themselves and the drop. The unfortunate Pepe Mel was summarily dismissed and replaced by the relatively unknown, Alan Irvine, who has previously managed Preston North End and Sheffield Wednesday, as well as a more recent spell as the head of Everton’s academy.
The new man hasn’t had a good start. The baggies have picked up just 2 points from their four league games so far and sit second bottom of the league.
West Brom Tactics
Irvine has played 4-4-1-1 or 4-4-2 so far in the league. He has reverted to a more defensive, counter attacking style after Mel’s unsuccessful attempt to turn West Brom into a high energy, pressing side.
Youssouf Mulumbu and Craig Gardener provide the tackling and passing in the centre of midfield, while Saido Berahino and Graham Dorrans are two of the visitors more dangerous players going forward.
Interestingly, West Brom have made the third most crosses so far this season, averaging 27 per game. With only two league goals, both at home against Sunderland in their opening match, they are struggling to find the net – one of those was from the penalty spot.
Spurs are heavy favourites at 1.54, the draw is 4.5, with a West Brom win out at 7.4
Andros Townsend picked up an injury in the midweek Europa league game and is a doubt. Kyle Walker is a long term absentee.
West Brom could have a fully fit side but Anichebe faces a late fitness test.
Dembele played well in the centre against Sunderland and did enough to deserve a place partnering Capoue this weekend. If Pochettino can teach him when to play the quick, simple pass, he could thrive in a box-to-box role.
I would give Ben Davies a chance at left back and pair Vertonghen and Fazio in the centre but with Kaboul being made captain this week, it looks unlikely that he will be dropped in the short term.
Lamela, Eriksen, Chadli and Adebayor should continue up front. Despite the disappointment of last weeks 2-2 draw, they created numerous chances and were unlucky not to secure the points well before Kane’s late own goal.
Prediction: Spurs 3 West Brom 0
Anything other than a win will be a huge disappointment.
Let me know your thoughts on the game in the comments below.
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