Tottenham Hotspur host relegation threatened Burnley on Saturday, 20th December. While Burnley come off a victory over fast falling Southampton, Spurs won away at Swansea courtesy of a late goal by Christian Eriksen. With Champions League qualification still in sight, Spurs will be keen to get all the three points on display at White Hart Lane. On the other hand, after failing to win since November, Burnley have found some form. They have picked 8 points off the possible 15 in the last 5 games, while their hosts for the night, Spurs, have garnered 10 points in the last 5 games.
Spurs do not have major injury concerns going into this fixture. Eric Dier, who is recovering from an ankle injury, is expected to have a late fitness test and could possibly feature in the game against the Clarets. If declared fully fit, Dier would slot into the right-back position to make it a back four of Dier, Fazio, Vertonghen and Davies.
Sam Vokes and Stephen Ward remain out of contention as they are still recovering from their injuries. While Ben Mee and Michael Duff are expected to be in contention for being picked, the club will have to wait at least one more week for the possible comeback of midfielder Matt Taylor.
After no assists in his first 17 games in all competitions this season, Christian Eriksen has set up three goals in his last two.
Burnley have conceded the highest number of headed goals this season (9).
Lloris, Dier, Fazio, Vertonghen, Davies, Mason, Bentaleb, Lennon, Kane, Eriksen, Soldado
Heaton, Trippier, Keane, Shackell, Mee, Arfield, Jones, Mamey, Boyd, Bames, Ings
As the midfield general, Eriksen has probably been the most crucial player in this Spurs side. After an average first season, Eriksen is now living up to the potential he was touted for when he was signed from Ajax. The Danish midfielder has found the back of the net on 6 occasions this season and currently sits atop the scoring charts at White Hart Lane. He has also created the highest number of chances at the club (33 Chances). However, the fact that only one chance has resulted into an assist speaks volumes about Spurs’ wastefulness upfront that has added to Eriksen’s responsibilities.
Spurs are up against a side threatened by relegation and will look to garner something out of this tie and it will fall on Eriksen to prise open the visitors time and again. He has scored goals, created chances, put in his share of tackles and has threatened the opposition often and the same will be expected of him on the weekend.
Burnley’s brief resurgence in the past few weeks has seen Danny Ings stand out. Ings has scored 4 goals in 13 appearances and has also created 14 chances. Up against a central pairing of Vertonghen and Fazio, the Englishman will have his task cut out against a solid defence. In the Premier League every goal counts on either end of the spectrum and Ings will know that he will be presented with a few half chances through the game and what he makes out of them will determine the result in many ways. He has converted just over 10% of the 31 chances that have fallen to him this season and will be looking to add to his goal tally as well as improving his conversion rate.
|2009/2010||Sun 09 May||Burnley||4 – 2||Tottenham H.||Premier League|
|Sat 26 Sep||Tottenham H.||5 – 0||Burnley||Premier League|
|2008/2009||Wed 21 Jan||Burnley||3 – 2||Tottenham H.||League Cup|
|Tue 06 Jan||Tottenham H.||4 – 1||Burnley||League Cup|
Burnley will be keen to get something out of a tie away from home. However, we expect the sheer difference in quality to come into play and Spurs to hold on for a not so comfortable victory. We predict a 1-0 win for the Spurs.