Manager-less Tottenham travel to St Mary’s Stadium this weekend to face Southampton in a game that provides a difficult battle for Tim Sherwood and his side during a troublesome period for Spurs – having exited the Capital One Cup at the hands of London rivals West Ham this week.
Tottenham won 2-1 away to Southampton last season but they have lost their five other matches at the St Mary’s Stadium without scoring. Spurs are chasing a third successive win against Saints. The hosts however have kept six clean sheets in their first nine league games, but have failed to keep a shut-out in their subsequent seven matches. They have failed to win their last five top-flight games (D2, L3). If they don’t beat Spurs it will equal their longest winless run under Mauricio Pochettino. Southampton have not won any of the eight Premier League matches in which they conceded the opening goal this season (D5, L3).
This is Tottenham’s first Premier League game after sacking AVB, the Portuguese boss won 29 of 54 league matches in charge of Spurs (D12, L13). He had a higher win percentage (53.7%) in Premier League matches than any other permanent Tottenham boss. Spurs have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last six Premier League matches, conceding a total of 16 goals. They have claimed 16 points from their eight away games this season. Prior to this weekend, that was the joint best record in the top flight (with Arsenal).
Injury wise, Tottenham have quite the list of casualties. Jan Vertonghen remains out with an ankle injury, Younes Kaboul’s quad issue persists, Andros Townsend pulled his hamstring against West Ham in midweek and Paulinho misses out through suspension. Michael Dawson returns after suspension with Sandro carrying a knock also.
I can only see one result coming from this game. The Saints are flying at the moment and Spurs looked far from confident at the Lane on Wednesday. Sherwood likes the traditional English 4-4-2 system and after the goal from Adebayor in midweek, I can see him retaining his spot but with Roberto joining him rather than Jermain who failed to make an impact against the Hammers.
Predicted team: Lloris; Walker, Chiriches, Dawson, Rose; Dembélé, Holtby, Lennon, Lamela; Soldado, Adebayor (4-4-2)
Predicted Score: Southampton 3-1 Spurs.