Saturday, 9th May 2015
Britannia Stadium, Stoke
Tottenham Hotspur look to enhance their chances of Europa League qualification as they visit the Britannia Stadium to face Stoke City on Saturday.
As we get to the business end of the season, Tottenham Hotspur are getting closer to securing Europa League qualification. Pochettinoa s side is sixth in the Premier League and hold a one-point advantage over seventh-placed Southampton. With just three more games to go in the season, Tottenham must try to win all the remaining games and end the season on a positive note. On the other hand, Stoke City are just aiming to finish in the top half of the table and look forward to the next season. With three more league games to go in the season, Stoke are placed 10th, three points ahead of Everton.
Team News and Tactics
Stoke City managed to beat Tottenham Hotspur at the White Hart Lane last November. That should serve as enough motivation for the Potters to try and achieve a double over the North-London club. Mark Hughesa side have performed considerably well in the league, throughout the season. Stoke are 10th in the table and with three more games to go, they can still manage a top half finish.
Playing against a Tottenham side that will strive to go home with all the three points on Saturday, Stoke City will be reserved in their approach. Hughesa side will rely on their defending in order to upset Tottenham on Saturday. The home side will maintain a highly physical approach and are expected to rely on their defenders to keep them in the game.
Marc Muniesa will be available for selection returning three months after suffering from a hamstring tear. Meanwhile, defender Marc Wilson will miss the game as he serves a one-match suspension after being sent off against Swansea last week.
Probable Line-Up (4-2-3-1): Begovic; Bardsley, Shawcross, Muniesa, Pieters; N’Zonzi, Whelan; Arnautovic, Adam, Walters; Crouch;
Mauricio Pochettino happens to be just another manager who has failed to take Tottenham Hotspur to the Champions League. However, the Argentine has done a pretty decent job in his debut season at the club and he is now eyeing the Europa League qualification. Placed sixth in the table, Tottenham are being fiercely chased by Pochettinoa s former side, Southampton and the London-based club must aim to win all the remaining games and ensure a sixth-place finish.
Travelling to the Britannia stadium is never an easy job. Spurs come into this game after being narrowly beaten by Manchester City last week. However, Tottenham put up a good display against last yeara s champions. On Saturday, Tottenham need to make sure that they are at their best in order to return with all the three points. Pochettino will urge his side to play highly attacking football as they will look to break the stern Stoke defence in their own backyard.
Mauricio Pochettino has Mousa Dembele and Andros Townsend back after they missed last week’s defeat by Manchester City. Ben Davies and Kyle Walker remain the only absentees for the away side.
Probable Line-Up (4-2-3-1): Lloris; Dier, Fazio, Vertonghen, Rose; Mason, Bentaleb; Lamela, Eriksen, Chadli; Kane;
Player to watch out for
Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)
The English strikera s form has cooled down in the recent weeks and he has let Aguero overtake him in the Premier League top-scorers list. However, Spurs will rely on Kane against Stoke on Saturday. The striker is expected to score a goal or two as he will try to compete with Aguero till the end of the season with only three more games to go.
Stoke City 0-1 Tottenham Hotspur
Both teams come into the game on the back of a defeat. However, Tottenham did a good job against Manchester City despite losing the tie. On Saturday, the away side will be more hungry for the three points. Though playing at home, Stoke will not be very eager to achieve the three points as a mid-table finish is guaranteed for the Potters.