White Hart Lane, London
November 10, 2013; 12:00 BST
Tottenham Hotspur host Newcastle United at White Hart Lane in their next Premier League fixture and would look to get back to winning ways after dropping points against Everton.
Tottenham Hotspur are currently fourth in the league table and five points behind league leaders Arsenal. This game provides a wonderful opportunity for Spurs to close the gap at the top as Arsenal and Manchester United face each other on Sunday. The London side have won only two of their last five league games and interestingly their last goal from open play came against Aston Villa. They are coming into this fixture on the back of a hard fought victory over FC Sheriff in the midweek Europa league clash.
Newcastle United climbed up to the top half of the table with their surprising victory against Chelsea last weekend. That was only their fourth win this season and one which should restore a lot of belief into the squad. Alan Pardew will hope that his side can take that belief into this match against Tottenham Hotspur.
Tottenham Hotspur – Team News, Lineup And Formation
Andre Villas Boas will still be without Nacer Chadli and Danny Rose due to injuries for this game, while Emmanuel Adebayor is nowhere close to returning to first team action presently. Hugo Lloris, who suffered from a head injury after a collision with Romelu Lukaku in the match against Everton, is expected to return to the starting line-up after missing out on the midweek Europa League clash against FC Sheriff.
Andre Villas Boas rotated his squad for the Europa League clash and he is expected to revert back to his first choice side against Newcastle United. The former Chelsea manager will make nine changes to the side he fielded against Sheriff. Lloris will return in goal in place of Brad Freidel, while Jan Vertonghen moves back to the left-back spot. Vlad Chiriches will partner Michael Dawson in the center of defence and Kyle Walker will retain his place. Paulinho and Sandro will form the pivot ahead of the defence.
Erik Lamela, who produced his best performance in a Tottenham shirt against Sheriff, will drop back to the bench as Townsend retains his place on the right. Lewis Holtby will replace Christian Eriksen in the hole behind the striker, while Aaron Lennon continues to play as the inverted winger on the left. Roberto Soldado will start upfront in place of Jermain Defoe.
The prime concern for Andre Villas Boas in the league has been the lack of goals. Spurs have scored only nine goals in 10 matches so far and three of those nine goals have come from penalties. Six goals from open play in 10 matches isn’t good enough for a side who wish to compete for the top four spot this season. Roberto Soldado needs to fire for Spurs and the Spaniard is yet to justify his price tag so far. Gylfi Sigurdsson is the only midfielder who has threatened to score, and he is unlikely to make it into the starting line-up. Andre Villas Boas needs more from his attackers in front of the goal; although on a positive note, Tottenham have been solid at the back. If they can somehow add a bit of effectiveness at the top along with their defensive solidarity at the back, they would be a team to watch out for.
Possible Starting Line up [4-2-3-1]: Lloris (GK); Walker, Dawson, Chiriches, Vertonghen; Sandro, Paulinho; Townsend, Holtby, Lennon; Soldado
Newcastle United – Team News, Lineup And Formation
Alan Pardew has a long list injury list to deal with ahead of this fixture. Fabricio Colocinni, Massadio Haidara, Ryan Taylor, Steven Taylor and Paul Dummett are all out of contention for this game due to injuries. There are also concerns about the fitness of Cheick Tiote after he was substituted in the match against Chelsea with a muscle strain, but it was a minor injury and he is expected to feature in this game.
Alan Pardew is unlikely to make too many changes to the side which won against Chelsea last weekend. He will make only one change to that starting line-up as Papiss Cisse replace Shola Ameobi upfront. There won’t be any change in tactics though and Newcastle United will use the 4-4-2 formation.
Shifting Loic Remy to a more central role is good move by Alan Pardew as he has looked the most Newcastle United dangerous attacker this season. The Frenchman isn’t comfortable in playing out wide, where he was played initially this season. Now with Remy alongside Cisse, Newcastle United have a good looking attack upfront. But this also means that Yohan Cabaye will have to be more disciplined tactically or he could expose his partner Tiote and the defence.
Newcastle United will be outnumbered in the center of the midfield, but they would look to exploit the wings with Yoan Gouffran and Moussa Sissoko/ Ben Arfa providing the width. Gouffran will be tasked with tracking back and helping out Davide Santon in defending against Townsend down that wing. The Englishman has provided most of the spark in attack for Tottenham in recent times and containing him will be Newcastle’s prime concern.
Possible Starting Line-Up [4-4-2]: Krul (GK); Debuchy, Williamson, Yanga-Mbiwa, Santon; Sissoko, Cabaye, Tiote, Gouffran; Remy, Cisse
Player To Watch Out For
Loic Remy (Newcastle United)
Loic Remy has been in wonderful form this season and has undoubtedly been Newcastle United’s biggest threat in the attack. The Frenchman has already scored six goals in seven starts this season, along with one assist, and will once again be the key in Newcastle’s pursuit of getting a positive result at the White Hart Lane. Incredibly, Remy has scored the same number of goals in the league as Tottenham have scored from open play this season!
Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 Newcastle United
Tottenham Hotspur will come out with a lot of positive intent in this game as they look to get back to winning ways after dropping points against Everton. Spurs need to score goals and most of the emphasis will be in attack. Newcastle United will look to weather the early storm and hit Spurs on the counter attack. But Tottenham at home might be too strong for Newcastle United and expect them to win this by a solitary goal.