Tottenham travel to Aston Villa this weekend in a fixture that had presented some pleasant results for Spurs in recent campaigns. Being undefeated against Villa in the league and cup last season at Villa Park will present Mauricio Pochettino with confidence during a turbulent time at White Hart Lane. The second widest pitch in the league at Villa Park leaves Pochettino with nowhere to hide should the result be sour for Spurs.
With much debate over the situation regarding Spurs’ strike force is week, the starting XI on Sunday is sure to raise some eyebrows.
Stats (via BBC Sport)
Tottenham have won their last five league and cup games against Aston Villa, scoring 15 goals in that sequence and conceding none. Villa are winless in 12 matches against Spurs in all competitions since a 2-1 victory at White Hart Lane on 15 September 2008.
Tottenham have only won once in their last seven league matches. Defeat would mean they lose three successive top-flight games for the first time since November 2012. Spurs have eight points fewer than at this stage last season. It’s their worst start since 2008-09, a season which saw Juande Ramos sacked after eight games.
For the first time in their history, Villa have lost five successive league games without scoring. The last time they failed to score in five consecutive top-flight matches was in March 1992 (D3, L2). The Premier League record for most successive defeats without scoring a single goal is seven matches, set by Ipswich in 1995. Villa have lost 10 of their last 11 Premier League games against London sides.
Mauricio Pochettino will decide on the fitness of Aaron Lennon and Etienne Capoue at the last minute ahead of the game. Kyle Walker and Nabil Bentaleb remain sidelined with Kyle Naughton expected to be in the squad.
Starting XI – Lloris, Dier, Kaboul, Vertonghen, Rose, Dembélé, Lamela, Eriksen, Chadli, Kane, Soldado
Score – Aston Villa 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur