All Holds Barred
It all went Pete Tong in this fixture back in April. Not just the 1-1 draw but Dele’s punch to the midriff of Claudio Yacob. The draw left us 7 Pts behind leaders Leicester but if we had managed the win we would only have been 5pts behind with 3 to play. Not exactly all over, the good ship Hotspur had been holed, but remained afloat and under steam.
However, the retrospective 3 match ban given to Dele meant that our Battle Action Repair Officer was missing for the final 3 games just when needed the most. It was our seasons talisman that was sunk!
One thing that has been noticeable about Dele’s play this season is, in the main, the absence of his snide little digs, like a punch to the midriff. A sign of maturity as a player, or Poch’s Golden touch – you decide? I’m sure it won’t happen this time, then again, Pullis will no doubt be getting Yacob to goad him, and James McLean to put in his usual one (minimum) vicious tackle per game on him, hoping for a reaction. Fingers crossed there then.
Lots of 1-1 draws against Perfidious Albion in recent seasons. We owe them one (or maybe two) and I feel this time we will go one better. No particular reason, just happy and confident with how we are playing – especially the three at the back. Dier/Alderweireld/Vertonghen should be tall enough and beefy enough to cope with the Throstle’s aerial threat, especially guarded by Wanyama and Dembele. They aren’t going to be able to run rough-shod thotogh our middle as before. Rondon is their man of the moment, and when on form, he can cause any defence difficulties. I’ve heard that Brunt may be a doubt, if so Whey hey!
We need to score two, and that is something we haven’t been able to do so against them in recent years. We are in good enough form at the moment to believe that we can and we will. Since going 3 at the back we have a new found freedom going forward and suddenly we are free-flowing again. Additionally with Sissoko and N’Koudou to come on, we have the players now to alter our formation and/or the style of play. Something we haven’t been able to say or do for a while now. Pullis will confront a totally different Spurs this time.
Johnny Evans is out for them, and like Brunt, Chadli is also a doubt for Albion, although this may be a bluff by Pullis. A play not unfamiliar to him. I’m not expecting Chadders to score if he does play, reason – I never expected him to score for Spurs when he played for us haha!
Here’s hoping for a good clean game (are you listening McLean?), and if we get it, I’m thinking a 2-0 win for the mighty Spurs. That’s where my£1 is going on SkyBet.
Oh, if you want an all singing all dancing preview with all sorts of stats then have a read at Paul Smith’s preview here:- Spurs Odyssey Match Preview
HotspurSam 23 Jan 17
photos sourced from public domain thru internet and social media