League Two side Colchester brace themselves for a mammoth clash against Tottenham Hotspur as Mauricio Pochettino eyes progression in the Carabao Cup.

The Carabao Cup is back as many of the Premier League sides take on lower league oppositions in the third round. Among one of the standout games, Tottenham travel to League Two side Colchester, looking to take their first step towards progressing in this season’s cup competition.

Colchester will be bracing themselves for this mammoth clash and would want to take this opportunity to test themselves against the opposition of Tottenham’s calibre. After their early struggles in the league, Colchester finally found some form and have won six of their last eight games in all competitions. Most notably, Colchester defeated Premier League side Crystal Palace in the second round on penalties.

They will be hoping to repeat this trick against Tottenham, although Spurs are on a different level altogether, and the League Two side may not have that kind of quality to do so. Tottenham, are desperate to prove themselves in this competition, as Mauricio Pochettino will want to target the Carabao Cup as his quest for his first trophy at Tottenham continues.

Spurs come into this game on the back of a morale-sapping defeat at the hands of Leicester City in the Premier League. Pochettino will want his side to shrug aside their dismal form and start performing as serious title challengers. The North London side could start making amends with a win over Colchester and start a decent run of form.

Team News & Tactics

Colchester

John McGreal will look to field his strongest side possible against Tottenham. In his quest to do so, the manager will have the chance to choose from a near full squad, with midfielder Harry Pell the only notable absentee. McGreal will look to continue with Kwame Poku on the left side, with Franck Nouble seems likely for a place on the bench.

At the back, Ryan Clampin will look to return into the side at left-back. He will form part of a back-four with Luke Prosser and Tom Eastman playing in central defence, while Ryan Jackson looks likely to start at right-back. A two-man midfield will see McGreal start with Ben Stevenson and Brandon Comley.

Poku, Jevani Brown and Courtney Senior will take their places behind central striker Luke Norris.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Gerken; Jackson, Eastman, Prosser, Clampin; Comley, Stevenson; Senior, Brown, Poku; Norris

Tottenham Hotspur

Pochettino will take this game as an opportunity to hand starts to some of his fringe stars. The manager is still without Giovani Lo Celso, who has been out since the international break. However, fellow Argentine Juan Foyth could mark his return from injury, but new signing Ryan Sessegnon suffered a setback in his recovery. The Colchester game might come too soon for him.

Pochettino will look to start with many of his regulars who did not start against Leicester City. Dele Alli and Davinson Sanchez are primed for starts alongside Christian Eriksen, Lucas Moura, and Ben Davies. However, Hugo Lloris, who missed the Leicester game due to the birth of his daughter, might be absent again.

There could also be a new-look midfield with the likes of Victor Wanyama and Eric Dier set to start the game. Kyle Walker-Peters could also come in at right-back to replace Serge Aurier.

Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Gazzaniga; Walker-Peters, Sanchez, Vertonghen, Davies; Wanyama, Dier; Eriksen, Alli, Moura; Kane

Key Stats

  • Tottenham and Colchester have met only once before.
  • A 2-1 win over Leyton Orient at the weekend means Colchester have lost just one of their last nine matches in all competitions and have won four of their previous six.
  • Colchester are also unbeaten in their last three games at home.
  • Spurs have won only one of their last six matches in all competitions and have failed to win in their previous four games on the road, drawing three.
  • Tottenham did win on their previous trip to the Colchester Community Stadium, emerging 4-1 victors in the FA Cup in 2016.

Player to Watch

Lucas Moura

Will he take his opportunity to shine? (Photo courtesy: AFP/Getty)

Will he take his opportunity to shine? (Photo courtesy: AFP/Getty)

During the first few games of the season, Lucas Moura was building up the hype, coming off the bench to score few goals. He was also the hero from the bench after scoring the equaliser against Manchester City but still finds himself among the substitutes repeatedly. So it has come down to cup games for Moura to convince his manager to hand him starts in league matches.

And Moura will want to make most of this as his chance. Considering the fact that Spurs misfired against Leicester, the Brazilian could stake a claim at a starting spot in the league if he is to impress against Colchester.

Prediction

Colchester 0-2 Tottenham

Colchester did manage to turn many heads after defeating Crystal Palace in the second round of this competition. That game went to penalties, which either reflects on Colchester’s resilience or Palace’s inability to score. Tottenham are expected to leave nothing to doubt, as they look to bounce back from the disappointing defeat away to Leicester.

Moreover, Tottenham are not expected to take the Carabao Cup lightly and will look to go all the way to Wembley to claim their first trophy under Pochettino. So expect Spurs to charge down on their opponents and get a win on Tuesday. The prediction might be just two goals to Spurs, but considering the quality the North London side have on board, it could well be more than that.

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