Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United will lock horns in the London Derby on Tuesday night, with a lot at stake for both the teams.
Tottenham will be looking to register their first win in eight games across all competitions, when they welcome local rivals West Ham United to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Tuesday in the Premier League.
Jose Mourinho’s men restarted their 2019/20 Premier League campaign with a 1-1 draw against fellow top four hopefuls Manchester United this past Friday. The result meant the Lilywhites are without a win in their last seven matches across all competitions, with the last win coming against Aston Villa back in February.
Currently eighth in the league table, Spurs are nine points below Chelsea in fourth. And they cannot afford any more slip-ups if they are to keep the hopes of a top four finish alive.
West Ham United, on the other hand, also have a lot at stake heading into Tuesday’s game. The Hammers are 17th in the table as things stand, following their 2-0 defeat to Wolves this past weekend. Level on points with Bournemouth in 18th, David Moyes’ men will need to grab as many points as they can in the remaining eight games to ensure their survival in the Premier League.
The reverse fixture, played in November last year, was Mourinho’s first game in charge of Tottenham. The Lilywhites held on for a 3-2 win on that occasion, after West Ham mounted a late comeback at the London Stadium. Ahead of their latest meeting this Tuesday, The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at both the teams.
Team News & Tactics
Mourinho will be boosted by the return of two key players in the form of Lucas Moura and Dele Alli. The former has recovered from an injury that forced him to miss the Manchester United clash, while the latter returns from a suspension. Youngsters Juan Foyth, Japhet Tanganga and Troy Parrott remain the only absentees for Tottenham.
Following the performance against Manchester United last week, Mourinho is unlikely to tinker much with respect to the formation and personnel on Tuesday night. So, we can expect Spurs to set up in a 4-2-3-1 formation once again, with captain Hugo Lloris manning the goal.
Right-back Serge Aurier had a positive outing on Friday night and should look to build on it against West Ham. Ben Davies should continue on the opposite side for Tottenham, while Davinson Sanchez and Eric Dier are likely to continue as the centre-back partnership, despite the latter conceding a penalty last time out.
Moussa Sissoko made his return from a lengthy injury layoff in the last game and showed his value to the side. He should continue in the two-man midfield pivot for Tottenham alongside Harry Winks, meaning Tanguy Ndombele will be benched again. Alli is likely to get the nod as the No. 10 over Erik Lamela against the Hammers.
Steven Bergwijn, who was on target against Manchester United, should continue on the right flank over the returning Lucas. Son Heung-min and Harry Kane are certainties for the remaining two attacking slots for the North London outfit.
Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Lloris; Aurier, Sanchez, Dier, Davies; Sissoko, Winks; Bergwijn, Alli, Son; Kane
West Ham United
West Ham United have are sweating over the fitness of a number of players heading into Tuesday’s game. Key defender Angelo Ogbonna will be subject to a late fitness test along with full-back duo Pablo Zabaleta and Arthur Masuaku to determine their availability. Star striker Sebastien Haller is ruled out, along with Robert Snodgrass.
Moyes is also unlikely to make a lot of changes to the team that started in the defeat against Wolves this past weekend. This would mean that the Hammers also operate in a 4-2-3-1 setup like their opponents on Tuesday night.
Former Arsenal star Lukasz Fabianski is the obvious choice between the sticks, with Issa Diop likely to partner Declan Rice at the heart of the Hammers’ defence once again. Aaron Cresswell should continue at left-back, but there could be a change on the opposite side with Ryan Fredericks replacing youngster Jeremy Ngakia, who will soon be out of contract.
Captain Mark Noble is a guaranteed starter in the middle of the park. He will be partnered by January signing Tomas Soucek, who has done well since joining the club. The fit-again Jack Wilshere is also an option at manager Moyes’ disposal for Tuesday.
The attack is unlikely to see any changes with Pablo Fornals operating in the No. 10 role flanked by Jarrod Bowen and Felipe Anderson on either side. Michail Antonio will spearhead the attack in Haller’s absence.
Probable Lineup (4-2-3-1): Fabianski; Fredericks, Diop, Rice, Cresswell; Noble, Soucek; Bowen, Fornals, Anderson; Antonio
- Tottenham are looking to complete a Premier League double over West Ham United for the first time since the 2012/13 campaign under Andre Villas-Boas.
- West Ham beat Tottenham 1-0 away in the last season. However, they haven’t won back-to-back away league games against their London rivals since November 1996.
- Tottenham have lost their last two Premier League London derbues (both vs Chelsea). The last time they lost three in a row was way back in August 2005.
- West Ham have won just one of their last 10 Premier League games (D2 L7), while on the road the Hammers have lost each of their previous six. Only Bournemouth (7) have won fewer Premier League points in 2020 than the East London outfit (8).
- Tottenham have dropped five points from winning positions in their last two home league games, losing 2-3 to Wolves and drawing 1-1 to Manchester United despite leading. They had dropped only four points from winning positions in their previous 23 home matches in the league.
Player to Watch
The 26-year-old had been in fine form prior to his injury back in January. Up until then, the England captain had netted 17 times across all competitions. Kane made his return from a lengthy injury layoff against Manchester United last time out, but looked scratchy and out of touch.
However, when West Ham come visiting, the England captain needs to be firing on all cylinders for Tottenham to be able to string together a run of wins. It bodes well for Tottenham that he has a fine record in London derbies – 29 goals in 47 PL derby games. Him rediscovering his form will be key to Spurs’ top four hopes.
Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 West Ham United
Both Tottenham and West Ham failed to win in their first match after the resumption of the Premier League campaign and will be gunning for a win given what’s at stake for both the teams. However, without Sebastien Haller, the Hammers lack a significant goal threat and may struggle to muster up a fight.
Spurs, on the other hand, are largely injury-free and have all their best players back fit. And as a result, The Hard Tackle predicts a 2-0 win for Tottenham, bringing an end to their seven-game winless streak across all competitions.