After Wednesday’s VARce it’s back to the Premier League this weekend as Huddersfield Town come to Wembley on Saturday afternoon.
It could be a significant movers and shakers type few days as Chelski, two points behind us in fifth, go to all-conquering (Wigan excepted) Citeh on Sunday I believe. If we can sneak a win we may have the added Silva lining of creating a five point gap between us and fifth if the champions elect do their stuff. A few assumptions in there and a there’s a long way to go but our visit to Stamford Bridge in April is starting to look key.
The Terriers are in form seeing off Bournemouth and West Brom comfortably in the past few weeks and currently lie 14th, 3 points above the relegation zone. They’ve blown hot and cold all season though, proving to be easy meat for most of the top sides (and West Ham) whilst scrapping gamely and picking up points against those around them.
They signed Alex Pritchard, former Spur and one time future-Christian-Eriksen-plan-B in January and he’s started well, scoring against the Cherries and assisting versus the Baggies. He was a player everyone at WHL wanted to succeed especially after his successful loan spell at Brentford but an injury very early in his supposed breakthrough season moved him back a long way down the midfield pecking order. He’s much smaller in stature than a typical Poch player and I’m sure this was taken into account when he was sold to Norwich.
Huddersfield’s goals have been scored by Mounie and Depoitre mostly, though Mooy and van La Parra have chipped in but it’s at the other end where they need most improvement; they’ve had no clean sheets since Dec 30th. Following us they play Swansea, Palace, Newcastle and Brighton in succession. Yikes.
The chances are that we’ll have a Belgian free back line again. Unless Vertonghen’s had a very speedy and fulsome recovery I suspect Sanchez and Dier will take their place between Davies and Trippier. Or Rose and Aurier. It’s difficult to predict but Poch will have Wednesday’s game against Juve very much in mind when he scribbles down his eleven. Similarly with the midfield. We should not underestimate the energy of the Huddersfield ‘engine’ but he would like to give Dembele especially the weekend off. Wanyama and Winks have been pretty awful as a combination in the cup games, we’d be asking for trouble if we’d played those two but the alternative is Sissoko…
My guess (and it is a guess) would be Lloris, Davies, Trippier, Dier, Sanchez, Dembele, Wanyama, Son, Eriksen, Dele, Kane. That should be a good enough side to get an early goal and make light work of the remainder of the ninety minutes but we’ve had to work hard enough to overcome Rochdale and Palace recently to know that it’s unlikely to be straightforward.
Mike Jones is the referee.
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