Tottenham Hotspur produced clinical football at Wembley Stadium last Saturday. Harry Kane netted two goals, but it was really Sonny’s day. The South Korean superstar had his way with the Everton defense all match, not to mention an absolute dirty turn that will find itself in the Tottenham Hotspur highlight reels for years to come. That fourth goal, involving all eleven players, was magnificent as well.
Save Liverpool’s miraculous victory over Manchester City, last week’s set of fixtures were a gem for Tottenham Hotspur. Spurs two London rivals and combatants in the push for the top four slipped up. Chelsea’s draw to Leicester and Arsenal’s poor defeat to Bournemouth saw Spurs both gain and extend ground against their two greatest rivals. Sorry, West Ham. Tottenham remain in fifth place, but are just three points behind Chelsea and Liverpool, who are tied for third place, and six points behind Manchester United. Second place is a real possibility at this point.
Spurs demolished Southampton on Boxing Day and not much has changed for the Saints since. They beat Fulham in the FA Cup, but have gone winless in the Premier League since their last encounter with Tottenham. A draw against Manchester United is certainly a highlight, but a loss to Crystal Palace and handing a two goal lead to Watford late are bad results and must be incredibly frustrating for the Southampton support.
Dusan Tadic remains Southampton’s greatest threat by a country mile, while James Ward Prouse and Nathan Redmond can be effective going forward too. Fundamentally though, it is Tadic who can turn a game on its head and is the one to watch. Outside of that, its really their outside backs — Ryan Bertrand and Cedric Soares — who can be dangerous in the attack.
Defensively, the Saints are just very average and don’t defend particularly well as a team. Their rank of seventeenth place in clean sheets and twelfth place in goals against, coincides with their place in the Premier League table, and seems about right. Spurs should cruise on Sunday.
How to Watch
Date/time: Sunday, January 21st, 2017, 4:00 p.m. (UK), 11:00 a.m. ET (USA)
Venue: St. Mary’s Stadium, Southampton, UK
Official: Kevin Friend
TV: NBCSN (NBC Sports Live Extra), Sky Sports Premier League, Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Go Extra, BBC Radio 5 Live NOW TV UK Sky Go Uk(UK), TSN4, TSN1, TSNGO (Canada), Optus Sport (Australia), other listings at livesoccertv.com
Streaming: NBC Sports Live Extra (USA)
Radio: Audio streamed at tottenhamhotspur.com, also often at BBC Radio London,BBC Radio 5 Live, and TalkSport
The good news is that Toby is nearing the end of his rehabilitation and should be training sooner rather than later, the bad news is that Hugo is sick and might miss out, while Harry Winks and Danny Rose continue to miss out due to an ankle and knee respectively.
After the Everton match, I can't see a change to the lineup. It is Kieran Trippier’s turn to start, but with Newport County slated just days before a massive match with Manchester United, I think that Pochettino will start Aurier for the two Premier League matches, while Trippier will get the cup tie. There is also a chance that Moose gets an elongated midseason rest and Moussa Sissoko starts in his place, but I’d probably still give the nod to Dembélé for the start.
In terms of Sunday’s lineup though — if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Tottenham start in the same exact lineup that lit up Everton. Aurier, Sanchez, Vertonghen, and Davies will be across the back four. Dier and Dembélé will be in the double pivot, with Sonny, Eriksen, and Dele in the attacking band. Harry Kane will start up top.
Jake Meador and Ed F gave Big Sam the respect that he deserves by predicting a draw, but it just wasn’t Everton’s day. Everybody else predicted a win, nobody foresaw a loss. Not much changed at the top.
|Earl of Shoop||14|
Dustin Menno: Saints have gone off the rails and Spurs are hitting their stride. 3-1 Spurs, Kane with a brace.
Matthew Pachniuk: Southampton are showing some signs here folks, but this team doesn’t know how to win. They won’t be getting any experience on that front on Sunday. Spurs 3-0.
GN Punk: The sunny skies of Barcelona rejuvenates a team that was already playing well. Poor Saints won’t know what hit them. 4-0 Spurs.
Jake Meador: 2-0 Spurs.
Skipjack: Saints are good but its going to be hard to penetrate the chain of blocks that Spurs defense set up. I expect Tottenham to leverage their skills to break through. 2-0.
Earl of Shoop: More like aints. Spurs 3-1
Ed F: It’s all looking Pelle-grim-o for Southampton and their manager right now. 3-0 Spurs.
Salmon Chase: We are going to take these Swans and...wait for it...keep waiting for it...are you ready for the big new slogan for use going forward? We are going to “Put’em on the DESK”.
Thank you, thank you. I’ll be at the Dock street brewery in Philadelphia on the 25th and the Station bar in cranberry nj on the 26th. 3-0 Spurs.
Pardeep Cattry: It’ll be a standard little drubbing. Tottenham 3-0.
Alex Greenberg: Southampton haven’t won in the league since November. I’m definitely jinxing it, but Spurs win easily 4-1.
Nathan Giannini: Southampton should probably be higher than 17th in the league, but it’s not getting any better for them this Sunday. Spurs win 3-0.
Joe Patrick: Are we usually in a malaise coming off the annual Barcelona trip? I’m not sure, but I feel like that might be the case this year. We’ll still win, it’ll just be a little choppy in the early stages. 3-1 Spurs.
Joel Wertheimer: Spurs are rolling. 3-0.
Bryan A: TBD