Norwich City FC
White Hart Lane, London
26th December 2015, 15:00 GMT
Boxing Day is here and the apt gift for Tottenham fans would be a victory against a Norwich side riding high on confidence.
Tottenham have had a good run of form of late. However their inability to score enough goals has earned them more draws than victory. With 29 points from 17 games, they stand above Manchester United and Crystal Palace only due to a superior goal difference. Spurs although riding strong have benefited a lot from misfortunes of the teams currently below them (Liverpool, Manchester United).
Norwich on the other hand havena t been as fortunate, and are currently placed sixteenth. With a point for every game played, they hover just two places above the relegation zone and will come in guns blazing to take over North London after a victory against the league giants Manchester United.
Team Tactics and Lineup
The Tottenham squad will have little change from the one that faced Southampton last week. With the same formation, the only change that Pochettino will make to his squad will be to bring the fit and recovered Danny Rose in place of Davies at the left side of defence. Alderweireld and Vertonghena s partnership still stands strong and will remain unchanged in the back four. Kyle walker will be on the right side of defence while the splendid Lloris will take his rightful place in front of goal to complete the defensive lineup.
Dier and Dembele will make up the two defensive midfielders. Dier has grown in confidence and matured as a midfielder, which can be witnessed in his confident forward runs. Dembele, on the other hand, has stepped up his game and has been his absolute best in the recent fixtures. Complementing Diera s abilities very well, Dembele will hold the ball and make diving runs as well as constitute threat for the opposition.
Lamela Eriksen and Alli will be the three that will play ahead of Dier and Dembele. Eriksen, although a shade of what he was in the previous year, will look to get back into his former self and threaten through his set-piece prowess. Alli and Lamela, on the other hand, have both been exceptional this season. Lamela has finally justified his price tag and has been able to provide Kane with the much needed support from the left side of midfield. Alli, on the other hand, has fit into the Premier league side like a jigsaw puzzle in his rightful place. Kane will be the lone striker as usual, and will hope to combine well with his teammates to be an attacking threat.
Predicted Line-up (4-2-3-1): Lloris; Rose, Vertonghen, Alderweireld, Walker; Dier, Dembele, Eriksen, Alli, Lamela; Kane.
With an astounding victory against Manchester United, Alex Neil will be reluctant to change his squad. Andre Wisdom and Matt Jarvis will miss this fixture as they are still injured and unfit to play. John Ruddy will continue to be on goal after his performance against united. With the defensive wall of Basson and Bennet to cover him, Ruddy will hope they can repeat if not better their performance against Spurs from the previous week. Olsson and Martin will occupy the left and right side of defence respectively.
Tetty and Oa Neil will be the two holding midfielders, who will look to break any form of fluid play near the half line so as to subside any form of attacking threat. Brady and Redmond will be the designated wingers on the left and right side of the field. They will pose a threat to the Spurs wing backs with their constant encroachment infield while supporting the other attacking players.
Hoolahan, although playing as a number ten, will surge ahead almost like a second striker and team up with Cameron Jerome who is the designated lone striker. Having scored in the previous game against united, Jerome will look to catch up to Nathan Redmond who is currently the club’s top scorer this season. Oa Neil will look to play a counter attacking game and catch Tottenham off-guard when they maintain a high line as they play away from home.
Predicted Line-up (4-4-1-1): Ruddy; Olsson, Bassong, Bennet, Martin; Brady, Tettey, Oa Neil, Redmond; Hoolahan, Jerome.
- Spurs have conceded only 5 goals in their last 10 games.
- Norwich have the upper hand with 2 wins and 2 draws in the last 5 games against Spurs.
- Norwich have never won a game on Boxing Day.
- Only Leicester City (1) have fewer losses than the Spurs (2) this season.
Player to Watch
The Tottenham striker is out to prove that he isna t another one-season wonder. After a slow start Kane has scored 10 goals in 10 games. Kane will look to give the Norwich team a torrid time, along with the support of Eriksen Alli and Lamela constantly prying open their back four. Kane will most likely find himself on the score sheet at least on one occasion if not many against Norwich.
Tottenham Hotspur 2 a 1 Norwich City
Tottenham have not only had the advantage of exceptional individuals but also benefited from the synergy among players. Although Norwich ride high on confidence, their opponents will prove too strong at home and will eventually lose the game.