Next up for Spurs, Turf Moor on Saturday afternoon.
Burnley’s home form has been one of the talking points of the season. They have consistently seen off teams higher in the table than themselves but perhaps significantly they have beaten only Liverpool of the top six and have lost to Woolwich & Citeh. They did get a good draw with Chelski though.
The Clarets tactics are based around conceding possession and relying on the speed of Gray and Barnes on the break. At the back Tom Heaton & Michael Keane regularly gain plaudits, the midfield works its collective socks off and Sean Dyche provides a calm and collected, though consistently hoarse, presence.
Praiseworthy though they are, don’t get me wrong, they’re not that good. They still have Barton, they still have Boyd & Hendrick and away from home, where their sit back then pounce approach should reap dividends, their results have been appalling. No wins and only three points all season. They have not won anywhere since the last day of January.
Every Dutchman has his day?
What team we put out depends mostly on two things, the fitness of those returning from playing in Europe, Kenya and South Korea and whether or not Poch sees any value in starting with Janssen leading the line. Deserved as the win against Saints was a fortnight ago, it did throw into sharp relief the oft neglected good work that Kane does in terms of holding up the ball and combining with Eriksen and Alli.
Heung Min Son has talents but they are not the same as Harry’s. Given that Burnley are liable to be happy to give up the ball for long periods maybe Kane’s skills in this area won’t be missed but the thought may well cross Pochettino’s mind that an hour of a rested Janssen might provide more initial value than sixty minutes of jet lagged Son.
Apparently, Janssen has flu and is a doubt for the game. That should help make the manager’s mind up.
If the game in December is anything to go by we can expect something of a battle of attrition with the home team aware that keeping their goal safe and hoping for a bit of frustration to creep in is their best option.
As usual an early goal would be very desirable. Son’s dancing feet will be important, Walker’s raids up the right crucial and All’s eye for a goal vital.
Stuart Atwell is the referee.
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