Premier League Match Preview: Tottenham Hotspur vs West Ham United
After playing on Friday, Tottenham will once again return to action on Tuesday night at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, for a derby clash against West Ham United.
The first game after the Premier League restart did not go to plan for Tottenham, as Jose Mourinho’s men played out a 1-1 draw against fellow top four hopefuls Manchester United. As a result, we remained eighth in the table, with the gap to Chelsea in fourth now increased to nine points from seven. Three points are pretty much mandatory on Tuesday, for us to keep the hopes of a top four finish alive.
West Ham United, on the other hand, are involved in the relegation dogfight. They were beaten 2-0 by Wolverhampton Wanderers in their first match after resumption. Currently in 17th place, David Moyes’ side are level on points with Bournemouth in 18th and are ahead only on goal difference. Another defeat here could spell trouble for the Hammers.
Following the draw to Manchester United on Friday, Tottenham are now seven games without a win across all competitions. Our last victory remains the 3-2 triumph our Aston Villa in the Premier League back in February.
West Ham United
West Ham United, on the other hand, have won just one of their last eleven fixtures in all competitions (D2 L8). That win came back in February against Southampton (3-0). Since then, they have lost both their fixtures.
Tottenham wins: 97 West Ham wins: 64 Draws: 52
The two teams have squared off once this season, in what was Mourinho’s first game in charge, back in November last year. Goals from Son Heung-min, Lucas Moura and Harry Kane fired Spurs to a 3-0 lead before the Hammers staged a late comeback through Michail Antonio and Angelo Ogbonna. However, we held on for a 3-2 win on the night.
Tottenham have won three of the last five derbies against West Ham in all competitions (D1 L1).
The big news is that Dele Alli will be available for selection for Tuesday’s game, after having served out his one-match ban handed by the FA. Lucas Moura, who also missed the Manchester United clash, due to an injury, should be back in contention.
However, Tottenham will be without the services of Japhet Tanganga, Troy Parrott and Juan Foyth, who has suffered a knee injury.
West Ham United
West Ham United have a couple of key players missing out due to injuries as Robert Snodgrass (back) and Sebastien Haller (hip) are both unlikely to feature. Three players – Angelo Ogbonna, Arthur Masuaku and Pablo Zabaleta, will undergo late fitness tests to determine their availability for selection.
Hugo Lloris; Serge Aurier, Davinson Sanchez, Eric Dier, Ben Davies; Moussa Sissoko, Harry Winks; Steven Bergwijn, Dele Alli, Son Heung-min; Harry Kane.
West Ham United
Lukasz Fabianski; Ryan Fredericks, Issa Diop, Declan Rice, Aaron Cresswell; Mark Noble, Tomas Soucek; Jarrod Bowen, Pablo Fornals, Felipe Anderson; Michail Antonio
Players to Watch
It was an uneventful return to action for our star man on Friday night. Coming back on to the field after over six months, Kane showed signs of ring-rust, which was to be expected given the duration of his layoff. However, with games now coming thick and fast, the 26-year-old will have to step it up and start producing the goods.
Kane is our leading goalscorer for the season, with 17 strikes in all competitions so far. For us to stand a chance of finishing within the top four, the England captain needs to be firing on all cylinders for the remaining matches. Hopefully, he kickstarts a goalscoring run on Tuesday against the Hammers.
One of the most coveted young players in England, Declan Rice has made his name in the defensive midfield position over the past couple of seasons. However, the game against Wolves last weekend saw the England international play as a centre-back and impressed heavily in the role.
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Rice has been one of the few positives this season for the struggling West Ham side. He will be a hindrance in Tottenham’s bid to notch up a victory in the derby on Tuesday night.