Tottenham Hotspur Stadium sets the stage for an all-London Premier League match-up between Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United.
An eagerly anticipated contest this Thursday comes at an opportune moment for Spurs despite the fact they’ll be out to post their first league win since late October.
Minutes away from turning a fourth consecutive top-flight game in which they’ve opened the scoring into a defeat, Ange Postecoglou’s side fought back to hold Manchester City to a 3-3 draw at the Etihad.
Dejan Kulusevski’s late header to equal the scoring could’ve proved insufficient, yet referee Simon Hooper refused to hand Pep Guardiola’s treble-winners a last-gasp penalty.
Even though they claimed a morale-boosting result in Manchester, Tottenham’s four-match winless streak has seen them tumble down the standings, falling two points adrift of fourth-placed Aston Villa.
West Ham’s cross-capital trip bodes well for the north London outfit’s bid to get back on track as they’ve emerged victorious in four of their last five encounters at home (D1).
Visiting boss David Moyes cut a frustrated character on Sunday, with Crystal Palace overcoming a slender half-time deficit to hold his team to a stomach-wrenching 1-1 draw.
Odsonne Edouard’s equalising strike knocked the Hammers down from a two-match winning streak in the Premier League, leaving them five points behind sixth-placed Newcastle United.
But the race for the European spots is still within their reach, though it’d require a massive improvement against direct rivals, having failed to win any of their four matches against current top-six sides this term (D1, L3).
Tottenham have made a habit of squandering early leads, going winless in their last four Premier League outings despite breaking the deadlock inside the first 25 minutes on each occasion.
Postecoglou has done a sterling job making Spurs an intimidating attacking force without Harry Kane, as evidenced by their impressive average of two goals per league game.
However, they’ve leaked goals at a worrying rate lately, conceding at least twice across their last five top-flight matches, not to mention capitulating before the interval three times.
If it’s any consolation, their last clean sheet in the Premier League came in a 2-0 home win against Fulham in October, while they won this corresponding fixture in 2022/23 by two goals to nil.
Midweek action has been fruitful for West Ham this season as last week’s late 1-0 win at TSC Backa Topola sealed their progression into the Europa League knockouts with a game to spare.
That victory forms part of the Hammers’ five-game unbeaten run in all competitions (W4, D1), which illustrates how confident they feel ahead of this daunting trip.
Further inspiration could come from a come-from-behind 2-1 triumph against Burnley on their last Premier League travel that halted their three-match losing league streak on hostile turf.
Consecutive top-flight wins on the road could be too much to ask, but avoiding defeat is a realistic prospect, given Moyes’ decent-looking track record against Tottenham throughout his storied career (W9, D11, L16).
James Maddison, Micky van de Ven, Rodrigo Bentancur, Ivan Perisic, Manor Solomon, Ryan Sessegnon and Ashley Phillips are still out for Tottenham.
On the upside, Cristian Romero is back after serving a three-game ban, while Pape Matar Sarr will likely start on the bench after missing the last two matches.
As for West Ham, Michail Antonio remains the only notable absentee, with Kurt Zouma expected to return to the starting XI after sitting out the Palace game due to a family issue.
Tottenham potential starting line-up:
(4-3-3): Vicario; Porro, Romero, Davies, Udogie; Bissouma, Lo Celso, Hojbjerg; Kulusevski, Son, Johnson.
West Ham potential starting line-up:
(4-2-3-1): Areola; Coufal, Zouma, Aguerd, Emerson; Ward-Prowse, Alvarez; Kudus, Soucek, Paqueta; Bowen.
We Say: Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 West Ham United
Another slip-up could throw Tottenham’s otherwise promising-looking campaign into disarray.
Postecoglou’s men are more than capable of beating any defence in the Premier League, but it’s up to his backline to step up.
West Ham cannot call upon Antonio, which could be what Spurs needed to contain the damage at the back.
- 777 Partners ‘frustrated’ over Everton proposed takeover
- Flynn Downes faces uncertain West Ham future
- Valencia vs Real Madrid: preview, team news, how to watch and prediction
- Paul Merson predicts who will secure Champions League football – Tottenham or Aston Villa
- Chris Sutton predicts score of Everton clash v West Ham