Everton vs. Tottenham Hotspur preview: Spurs try to make top four statement against kings of the draw

Jan Kruger

Everton is still in the top four mix, but Spurs can move three points clear with a win, which will be tough against the Premier League's top drawing team.

BREAKING NEWS: There is a Premier League match being played on Sunday besides the Manchester derby (two actually, but we only care about one so take that West Ham/Liverpool).

Tottenham Hotspur and Everton actually have an important match to play, too, as both sides jockey for position in the race for fourth place. Is that as important as winning the Premier League? No, but if you don't think that £35 million is important then give me that money and I'll conduct a study on the importance of it (note: my conclusion is that it is important and I will tell you this from my castle).

Spurs enter the match in fourth place and Everton in seventh, but only three points separate the two as a gaggle of teams make their claim for top four superiority. That Tottenham and Everton are in the mix is no surprise considering Spurs have finished fourth in two of the last three years and the Toffees have been just outside for years now, but that both are around with their unimpressive form is.

Neither Tottenham not Everton has really played exceptionally with any consistency and have struggled for fitness, yet here both are in the mix. Chalk it up to a crappy league or well, there is no other explanation, but Spurs and the Toffees are sure glad the Premier League is in the dumpster because European glory and a cash bath are still within their reach.

For Spurs, the whole "match is 90 minutes" thing has been a problem. Too often they have been brilliant for a half, somewhat competent for 25 minutes and then laughable for the final 20 minutes. The result is losses and draws that should be three points, as well as death defying wins that has cost them supporters by way of heart attack.

At least Tottenham win with some regularity, though. As unnecessarily dramatic as those wins may be, Everton would love three points in any form. They have one just one of their last nine matches, becoming a draw machine by taking a point from seven of those contests.

That Everton are getting draws is largely because of Marouane Fellaini, the Belgian who has made the Toffees' attack click with the season of his life. He has been downright deadly, pulling the strings from his advanced role, which will test Spurs' Sandro. The Brazilian will have to be as disciplined and poised as he is tenacious because the Spurs back line is still a work in progress and only he can really slow down Fellaini.

In the end, a draw looks likely, which would be fine for Tottenham away against a good team, but a win would be as sweet as can be. It wouldn't quite be a death blow to Everton's top four hopes, but it would be a stark reminder of who has been there recently, and who is still playing catch-up.

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