The reaper’s breath can clearly be felt on Villa’s neck as every game moves them closer to the premiership trapdoor. Each game is now a must win as the season draws towards its conclusion and the financial ramification of relegation are more harrowing than ever. Given the state of play at the club; the divide between players, the managers tactics, fans and management, this is a club experiences its own real life hammer house of horrors. It seems every week another pundit is writing off Villa’s survival hopes and more questions are being asked about the players and their testicular fortitude. I can just see Stanley Collymore having another brain haemorrhage on his talk radio show whilst discussing all the negative traits of the players.
The harsh reality is Villa must begin to take point from every game to even have a sliver of hope of surviving. Unlikely as the currently have 16 points on the board and have a goal difference of -33 points. All very bleak indeed, given this backdrop of gloom Tottenham Hotspurs and their frenetic work rate riding into town.
Spurs arrive smarting after their most comprehensive defeat of the season at the hands of Dortmund. There are question to be answered after an evening of schooling at the hands of the German high flyers. The much used word ‘character’ will be bandied about and questioned. How will the Spurs team respond to their midweek chastening? Those of a more cynical nature would argue the football gods have been more than kind to Spurs with this fixture coming after such a heavy mid week European defeat.
Spurs having made 7 changes mid week will welcome back the likes of Lamela, Dier, Kane, Alli and Walker adding quality and end product to the first team. Pochettino’s mid- week team selection may be a clear indication of where his focus is. Clearly he wants to focus on chasing down Leicester City and make every effort to win a trophy that has eluded Spurs for 60+ years.
Villa should line up with a forward line of Sinclair Agbonlahor and Ayew and Micah Richard marshalling the beleaguered Villa defence
Spurs have lost none of their last eight trips to Villa Park in all competitions (W6 D2 L0).
Spurs have won a league-high 18 points from losing positions in the Premier League this season.
If Aston Villa lose this match it’ll equal their worst tally of Premier League defeats in a single season (20 – set in both 2013-14 and 2014-15).
Harry Kane has scored 16 goals in his last 20 Premier League appearances for Tottenham, two more than Aston Villa (14) have in their last 20 Premier League games. The concern is that Harry Kane may start to feel the strain and Pochettino is doing his best to protect him by resting him where possible. However the fact still remains that Harry Kane is Tottenham’s talisman and his goals will be critical to Spurs’ chances of winning the premier league. If Spurs are to get their first premier league win in 3 attempts Harry Kane will have pivotal role to play.
Jordan Ayew has been surrounded by many rumours this week. The majority of which has linked him to a move away from Villa to West Ham. As Villa draw closer and closer to the premier league trap door the smart money is on Ayew not being there for the fight back to the English top flight. Ayew, 24, joined Villa from Lorient last summer having hit 13 goals in just 33 games for the Ligue 1 side last season. So far this season he has managed 5 goals in 18 appearances for Villa. He remains their main threat at goal and must have an extremely good game if Villa are to get something from this match.
On paper this seems like a dead set for a Spurs victory. Villa are in extremely poor form and are really playing like relegation candidates. Spurs on the other hand despite being premier league contenders haven’t had a win in their last 3 games. However I fully expect the likes of Eriksen, Kane and Alli to be too much for Richards and co to cope with.
Villa 0-4 Tottenham