The Stadium of Light plays host to Sunderland vs. Tottenham Hotspurs on Sunday afternoon. Both sides for what they aim to achieve have had poor starts to the new season. Sunderland are sitting at the foot of the table with only 2 points, while their opponents from the capital have are 16th with only one point more than the Black Cat’s. Tottenham will see a visit to the North-East as an opportunity with record their first victory of the season. Sunderland may not have marked a visit from Spurs as one where they would collect 3 points, although a victory over one of the division’s top sides could prove to be a much needed confidence boost for the players and fans alike. Having netted for England during the international break Spurs will be hoping that Harry Kane can take advantage of Sunderland’s leaky defence to get his scoring for the new campaign off the mark. Coming off the back of the international break, it will be interesting to see which sides players look sharpest and who have been worn out by their travels and exploits for their national sides.
Dick Advocaat’s side has a few injury concerns to deal with heading into the league tie. Steven Fletcher has returned from his Scotland duties with an injury with currently no known return date. Long term absentees for Sunderland includes; Adam Matthews who is set to miss the next 6 weeks with his respective injury, Adam Johnson is still 2 weeks away from a return to the side and Jordi Gomez is only 1 week away from getting back into games.
The biggest loss for Pochettino is that midfield lynchpin Christian Eriksen is still a week away from getting back into the team. The sides’ key creative player not being available will mean the side has to look for other players to step up and take over Eriksen’s creative load. New signing N’Jie is 2 days away from a recovery meaning he could make the squad for the trip. The same applies to both Moussa Dembele, who has been a regular starter so far this season, and winger Andros Townsend
The last time the two sides met at the Stadium of Light the game ended in a 2-2 draw in September 2014.
Sunderland have failed to win in their last 10 Premier League meetings.
Sunderland’s last victory over Spurs came at the Stadium of Light in April 2010. The Black Cats ran out 3-1 winners.
The two sides have met 53 times in Sunderland. Sunderland won 22 of those matches, Spurs have won 16 of them and the other 15 ended in a draw.
Sunderland have drawn more games than any other Premier League side in 2015.
In 4 of the last 5 games at the Stadium of Light Sunderland have conceded at least 2 goals against Spurs.
Spurs are yet to record a victory this season.
Top Goalscorers 2014/15
Sunderland: Steven Fletcher (5). Connor Wickham (5), Jermain Defoe (4)
Tottenham: Harry Kane (21). Nacer Chadli (11), Christian Eriksen (10)
Chances Created 2014/15
Sunderland: Seb Larsson (58), Adam Johnson (39), Patrick Van Aanholt (35)
Tottenham: Christian Eriksen (83), Erik Lamela (60), Nacer Chadli (41)
Avg. Defensive Actions 2014/15
Sunderland: John O’shea (8), wes Brown (8), Patrick Van Aanholt (7)
Tottenham: Fazio (13), Younes Kaboul (11), Jan Vertonghen (10)
Sunderland: Jermain Defoe
The former Spurs man seems to be Sunderland’s best option when it comes to goal scoring. For the home side to have any chance of picking up a huge victory over Spurs they will need Defoe to show the kind of form he did when he was wearing a Spurs shirt. The former England front man has 2 goals to his name so far this season and will be hoping to be at his scoring best on Sunday afternoon to add to his tally and give his current side their first 3 points of the season.
Tottenham Hotspurs: Son Heung-Min
Big money signings at Spurs have struggled to live up to their fee in recent years. The consensus is that the money received from the Gareth Bale sale to Real Madrid wasn’t spent incredibly well. South Korean international Son Heung-Min arrives at Spurs as their marquee summer signing, costing the club a cool £20 million to get him from Bayern Leverkusen. Son had created a good reputation for himself with his exploits in the Bundesliga and now Spurs will be hoping that he can help share the goal scoring load at the club with star striker Harry Kane. With little change to the Spurs attacking line from last season the hope will be the Son will add a new dynamic and fresh approach to their attack. A debut away at Sunderland could the very place for the new man to get off the mark for his new club. It would do him no harm to pick up a goal that helps his new team to their first 3 points of the season.
I see this as Spurs opportunity to get off the mark with their first win of the season. Having said that I don’t see Sunderland making it easy for Spurs on home soil
2-1 Spurs win