Tottenham Hotspur will hope to build on their impressive victory from last week as they get ready to host Newcastle United on Matchday 3 of the Premier League.
Tottenham Hotspur have had a mixed start to the 2020/21 campaign. The Lilywhites started off their season with a 1-0 defeat to Everton, failing to breach Carlo Ancelotti’s organised defence and lacking sharpness in attack. It was followed by a dominant 5-2 victory at Saint Mary’s against Southampton, which saw Son Heung-Min bag four goals with the help of four assists from Harry Kane.
The pressure will be immense on Jose Mourinho who will want to build on the incredible victory, and in the process get their first win at home this season. The Portuguese tactician cited a lack of fitness as one of the reasons for the club’s defeat to Everton. They were, however, able to overcome it despite a midweek fixture.
Newcastle United, like their opponents, have enjoyed a win and a defeat in the Premier League so far. They opened their season with a 2-0 win over West Ham United, in what was a more than convincing display. The following weekend, they fell to Brighton & Hove Albion at the AMEX stadium, suffering a 3-0 loss.
The last time these two sides met was at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in a game that finished comfortably in favour of the hosts. Kane was on target twice, and as was Son for Spurs, while Matt Ritchie scored the only goal of the game for Newcastle.
Team News & Tactics
Tottenham Hotspur are expected to be without three players ahead of this game, two of which are new signings Sergio Reguilon and Gareth Bale. Reguilon is expected to be fit for the next match, while Bale may take some time before he gets going. Japhet Tanganga has also been sidelined due to injury.
Jose Mourinho’s squad runs thin in the defence, and he may be forced to play Ben Davies for the fifth game running in the space of two weeks. Ryan Sessegnon is an option for the Portuguese, but has been out of favour at Spurs thus far and will see the game out from the bench. On the opposite side, Matt Doherty will return as the right-back after being dropped in midweek against KF Shkëndija.
These two will operate out wide while flanking the centre-half duo of Toby Alderweireld and Eric Dier. Davinson Sanchez is also an option if the need comes to call. Hugo Lloris will start between the posts.
The midfield is expected to see only one change, with Giovani Lo Celso coming in to replace Tanguy Ndombele, who enjoyed a impressive first half at St. Mary’s. Pierre-Emile Højbjerg will come in the right-of-centre slot, while Harry Winks slots in as the holding midfielder. There might be no place for Dele Alli in the team, even though he started in midweek.
There is little arguing over who Spurs’ front three are going to be, especially with Bale out till October, at the very least. Harry Kane will lead the offensive trio through the centre while Heung-Min Son and Lucas Moura start on the left and right wing respecitvely. Kane and Son will hope to recreate some of that magic from last week when they take the field together again.
Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Lloris; Doherty, Alderweireld, Dier, Davies; Hojbjerg, Winks, Lo Celso; Moura, Kane, Son
Unlike their opponents, Steve Bruce is missing a handful of his squad. This list starts with first-choice goalkeeper Martin Dubvravka, and ends with striker Dwight Gayle, with Paul Dummett, Matty Longstaff, and Fabian Schär also sidelined.
Allan Saint-Maximin hobbled off against Brighton, and his involvement will be determined later through a fitness test. Same goes for Jamal Lewis, who suffered a nasty cut close to his eye, while Ciaran Clark is set to miss out due to a thigh issue.
Gayle’s injury might not prove to be too problematic for Newcastle United after they signed English striker Callum Wilson from AFC Bournemouth. He was on target for the Magpies on his debut against West Ham United. Wilson will partner the club’s record signing Joelinton in a twin-striker system in what is expected to be a 4-4-2.
The midfield will consist of Isaac Hayden and Jonjo Shelvey with Sean Longstaff as their backup if need be. Saint-Maximin is expected to be back for Newcastle, starting on the left wide-midfield role. Jeff Hendrick ought to take up the only empty position in the four-man midfield on the right flank.
Lewis should retain his spot as the left-back, while Javier Manquillo will be on the opposite side of the defence. In between them, Federico Fernandez and Jamaal Lascelles will occupy the central defensive roles. Finally, in the absence of Dubravka, Karl Darlow will be handed the responsibilities as the starting goalkeeper.
Probable Lineup (4-4-2): Darlow; Manquillo, Lascelles, Fernandez, Lewis; Hendrick, Shelvey, Hayden, Ritchie; Joelinton, Wilson
- Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United have faced off against each other 50 times in the Premier league, with both teams winning 22 matches. The rest six have been draws.
- In the last five meetings between the two sides, Spurs have won four games, while Newcastle have won one.
- Tottenham have scored seven goals in the last five games against Newcastle while conceding three.
- In the 11 meetings between Jose Mourinho and Steve Bruce, the former has never lost – winning nine.
- Spurs have won three of their last five Premier League games (D1 L1), while Newcastle have lost three of their last five (W1 D1).
Player to Watch
Few strikers in the world come close to Harry Kane’s brilliance, and even few, or arguably none who manage to surpass it. That is because the Englishman is not only an accomplished goalscorer, but an incredible playmaker, and an all-round threat from across the pitch. This was evident against Southampton when he managed to set up four goals for Son while scoring one himself.
On Sunday, more than anything, Kane will have to come on top in two departments that will be key to break Newcastle United’ low block – lobbed through balls, and aerial duels. The Magpies are excellent in containing attacking teams and have only broken down in the case of the opponent’s physical prowess – something Kane possesses.
Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 Newcastle United
Last weekend, Tottenham Hotspur enjoyed what was arguably their best win under Jose Mourinho so far, and that can only serve as motivation for the team. Even though Newcastle United have failed to win away from home in North London for five years, it might become a close game given Spurs’ incredibly busy schedule.
It is entirely possible that Mourinho will have on eye on the midweek clash against Chelsea, and could rest some key players. That said, we expect the hosts to enjoy a narrow victory at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.