Hull City come to White Hart Lane desperate for three points. Their loss to Burnley last week combined with Sunderland’s win over Southampton means that they’re back in the bottom three and deep in the do-do. The Mackems have Leicester, Woolwich and Chelski as their remaining fixtures so have their work cut out but if the ball is going to continue to bounce off Defoe the way it did at Goodison then who knows?
The Tigers will fancy their chances of three points and looking at our recent form, who would disagree with them? One win in six I believe and no goals since Newcastle. Our season long reliance on Kane to keep the scoreboard ticking over is being thrown into sharp relief by his recent relative goal drought. Since his three against Leicester, the clincher at St James’s Park has been his only strike. Whilst he should’ve scored several times against Citeh, at Southampton, Stoke and at home against Villa he was anonymous, being crowded out well clear of goal, a lot like the aforementioned Defoe used to be of course.
Chiriches’s suspension puts extra pressure on an already stretched back four. Maybe this week we’ll finally see DeAndre Yedlin given a chance to blossom, or perhaps we’ll find out why he’s been so heavily protected. Hopefully Rose will be fit at left-back.
Swansea’s win at the Haemmerhoids on Monday means that the battle for sixth has now become a three-team fight. At the start of the season I think most people would’ve said that a sixth place finish was a good result and whilst I think that’s still the case given the unbalanced and underperforming squad that Poch was left with, the thought of not having to contend in the energy, time and money sapping Europa League is very tempting especially given the early qualifying rounds we may have to go through if we finish seventh.
So in an ideal world we’d be able to blood a few youngsters (Carter-Vickers, Winks, Onomah) and give others a chance to show what they can do before the summer shopping spree (Chiriches, Paulinho, Townsend, Dembele) but as it is, I suspect it’ll be the same bunch that appear to have been running through molasses for the last few weeks. I’d really hoped that the message had got through by now that a midfield of Mason and Bentaleb on their own is too light if the only support they get is from Chadli, Lamela and Eriksen but apparently it hasn’t.
No pace, no width, a flimsy midfield, a porous defence and a one man, currently misfiring attack. I’m a glass half empty man I know but even one who sees the surface of the lager as closer to the top than the bottom will admit that there’s a lot of work to be done in the summer.
I’ve just checked and can see that the Tigers have Man Utd as their final fixture; they’ll believe that they definitely need something from tomorrow’s game, which will give them an edge. We’ll need to turn up to get a point which is more than we did last weekend and make the most of our chances to get three.
Anthony Taylor is ref.
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