Tottenham Hotspur will look to heap pressure on the teams above them with a win over Huddersfield Town on Saturday.
Tottenham Hotspur will be hoping to make it four wins in a row at home in the Premier League when they face off against David Wagner’s Huddersfield Town at the Wembley Stadium.
The North Londoners currently sit fourth in the league table, four points shy of second-placed Manchester United and just two below Liverpool who occupy the third position. With both the teams scheduled to play later, Tottenham have a good chance of moving into third place and close down the gap to United in second.
And given the form that they are in, following the 6-1 trouncing of Rochdale in the FA Cup, Mauricio Pochettino’s men go into Saturday’s game as overwhelming favourites.
Huddersfield, on the other hand, are sitting in the 14th place in the table, three points above the drop zone. They too are in good form, coming into the game on the back of two consecutive wins in the Premier League, with the latest being a 2-1 triumph over West Bromwich Albion last weekend.
They will have good memories of playing at Wembley given that the last time they played at the historic stadium, the Terriers beat Reading on penalties in the playoff finals to achieve promotion to the Premier League last summer.
Team News & Tactics
Defensive mainstay Toby Alderweireld has been ruled out of the game by manager Pochettino as he continues his recovery from a troublesome hamstring problem. Fellow Belgian defender Jan Vertonghen, who missed the last two games for Spurs with an ankle injury, is back in training though, but is unlikely to be risked ahead of the club’s important UEFA Champions League clash against Juventus in the coming midweek.
Hugo Lloris will be reinstated between the sticks after sitting out of the FA Cup triumph over Rochdale during the week. At right-back, Serge Aurier is likely to come back into the fold in place of Kieran Trippier while Ben Davies is also expected to retake his place at left-back from Danny Rose.
At the heart of the defence, summer signing Davinson Sanchez should start alongside England international Eric Dier. The duo will have to beware of the danger posed by Huddersfield striker Steve Mounie, who has been in decent form of late.
The two pivot positions in the middle of the park are likely to be taken up by Victor Wanyama and Mousa Dembele. The former will be tasked with shielding his backline, while the latter will be given the license to drive his team forward from the middle.
January arrival Lucas Moura, who impressed heavily in the win over Rochdale, could be in for a starting berth on the right-flank, while Son Heung-Min should slot in on the left-hand side, with Dele Alli sandwiched between the two. The dynamic nature of the trio will cause problems in plenty for the visitors. Despite Fernando Llorente’s heroics in the midweek, when he scored a hat-trick, Harry Kane is expected to lead the line for the Lilywhites.
Probable Starting XI (4-2-3-1): Lloris; Aurier, Sanchez, Dier, Davies; Wanyama, Dembele; Lucas, Alli, Son; Kane;
David Wagner will go into the game without the services of Aaron Mooy and Elias Kachunga, both of whom are understood to be close to a return but won’t be available for Saturday. Sean Scannell and Jon Gorenc Stankovic are also ruled out for the Yorkshire-based outfit. However, they will be boosted by the return of midfielder Philip Billing and full-back Chris Lowe.
The manager is unlikely to make any changes from the side that beat West Brom last weekend meaning on-loan goalkeeper Jonas Lossl will once again start between the sticks, protected by the back four that will comprise of Florent Hadergjonaj, Mathias Jorgensen, Christopher Schindler and Terence Kongolo. The defence will be in for a stern test and how they fare against a mighty Tottenham attack will have a bearing on Huddersfield’s fortunes.
In the middle of the park, Jonathan Hogg is once again expected to partner up with Danny Williams to try and provide a screen to the backline.
Collin Quaner and Rajiv van La Parra will take up their positions on the right and the left-flanks respectively for the Terriers, while January signing Alex Pritchard will slot in as the No.10. He will be looking to make a strong impression against his former side on Saturday. Leading the line for the Terriers against Tottenham will be summer signing Steve Mounie, who has scored thrice in his last four games in all competitions.
Probable Starting XI (4-2-3-1): Lossl; Hadergjonaj, Jorgensen, Schindler, Kongolo; Hogg, Williams; Quaner, Pritchard, La Parra; Mounie;
- Tottenham are unbeaten in six games in all competitions against Huddersfield (W3 D3), since a 1-2 home defeat in April 1956.
- Huddersfield Town are unbeaten in their last four competitive visits to the Wembley Stadium (W1 D3), with the last two finishing 0-0, both of which they won on penalties.
- Tottenham are undefeated in their last 13 home matches in the Premier League and have kept a clean sheet in their last 3 home games in the English top-flight.
- Spurs are unbeaten in 16 games in all competitions – their best run since a similar streak between December 1998 to March 1999 under George Graham.
- Huddersfield haven’t kept a clean sheet in their seven league outings, with the last one coming against Burnley in December last year.
Player to watch
Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)
The England international is the Premier League’s top-scorer for the season with 24 goals already to his name. His 24 goals have been worth 14 points for Tottenham this season – the most for any player in the competition, highlighting his importance to the side.
Having already equalled his tally of 35 strikes in all competitions from the last season, Kane will be hoping to continue on his merry goalscoring ways and become only the third player to score 25+ goals in three consecutive Premier League campaigns after legends Alan Shearer and Thierry Henry.
Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Huddersfield Town
While the Terriers have been impressive in the past few games and have shown signs of resurgence, it is not going to be easy for them to pull off an upset against this Tottenham side who seem to be hitting their strides in the most important period of the season. And, here at the Hard Tackle, we predict a straightforward 2-0 win for the North Londoners on Saturday.