Middlesbrough VS Tottenham Prediction
Tottenham return within Premier League action after its midweek League Cup commitment as the weekend arrives with an away journey to Middlesbrough and destination to the “Riverside Stadium”. First matchup facing Tottenham and Middlesbrough after more than 7 years comes with matchweek six of the English Premier League where “Boro” has returned as a runner-up in the Championship, whilst “Spurs” couldn’t do better in a competition with Leicester City. However, Tottenham accomplished another target which has been chased for a long time and they can enjoy to football with the UEFA Champions League trademark as a result of the third position in final standings of season 2015-2016.
Middlesbrough vs Tottenham – Match Preview
Spurs will travel to Russia where in Tuesday evening Mauricio Pochettino’s side will face Russian champions CSKA Moscow and that game requires special attention, since Tottenham have lost their Champions League opener against AS Monaco which was staged by the national “Wembley Stadium”. That defeat was followed by two real home matches which Tottenham could play at its own fortress “White Hart Lane”. After the narrow success over Sunderland last weekend, Spurs had to welcome Gillingham in a game from round 3 of the English League Cup where Tottenham ran riot after scoring five despite its pretty experimental outlook. Serious number of first-team players were rested but others had to prove their dedication as they did – Christian Eriksen netted a brace, Erik Lame and Vincent Janssen have also scored once, as latter will be under the spotlights since he must replace injured Harry Kane.
Middlesbrough will hope to be a blackout for Spurs and they have some historical arguments padding their ambitions. Boro have beaten Tottenham in nine league games and we must say only Manchester City holds more wins against Spurs. Overall balance of games between both clubs shows 35 wins for Boro, 23 draws and 33 to Spurs, but we all know how much football has changed. Anyway, traditions are something really meaningful especially when it comes to English football and we just couldn’t resist sharing this important note with our readers.
Leaving all these historical arguments aside, Middlesbrough will play role of the underdog who plays at home and will do its best to stop the top team visiting its town. Indeed, Aitor Karanka’s men are not in their best shape and after winning four points in opening two rounds (1-1 vs Stoke City, 2-1 vs Sunderland), Boro struggles as they have won just one point in three rounds and in a meantime they were eliminated from the League Cup by Fulham. This forms a streak from four consecutive games without victory and the only positive in them remains prior break for international football last month, when Boro won a point at “The Hawthorns” – goalless draw vs WBA.
Middlesbrough vs Tottenham – Betting Prediction and Lineups
Unquestionably Harry Kane is Mauricio Pochettino’s biggest concern right now since Tottenham’s goal scorer sustained a nasty ankle injury minutes after he scored the winning goal against Sunderland last Sunday, 18 September. Unfortunately Kane wasn’t the only victim Tottenham gave in that game as Mousa Dembele and Eric Dier were forced off, though both came off with cramps. Not the best news for the away team here but anyway, both midfielders are set for a return in Saturday, although Dier is expected to remain behind the touch line, while Dembele should be fit enough for finding his place into Tottenham’s starting lineup. Early expectations are Kane will be out for 8 weeks and he should be ready in November, leaving serious burden for summer signing Vincent Janssen. The 22-year-old Dutchman must justify the £17 million paid to his former club AZ Alkmaar where he scored 31 goals in 49 games last season, as 27 of the goals (in 34 games) were in the Eredivisie. Janssen wears the number 9 shirt at the White Hart Lane and probably fact he has ended its goal drought, which actually was his first goal for the club, in the midweek encounter against Gillingham carries only positives. Now it’s up to him and to his teammates, do they have capability to form decent partnership in Kane’s absence?
Spanish boss Aitor Karanka has almost a fully fit squad to pick from with the returning of two offensive players Cristhian Stuani and Jordan Rhodes. However, there are still some doubts around Stuani’s condition and he has been marked as doubtful, but expectations are he’ll manage to start against Spurs. This will provide more attacking perspectives to Boro as they had to use Emilio Nsue as a right winger against Everton, but his contribution was far from pleasing. That’s why he was subbed after 59 minutes and we’re sure that Stuani will start at the right wing if he’s fit enough for wholesale performance.
Otherwise we don’t expect much rotations by Aitor Karanka and his main thoughts are related with condition of Cristhian Stuani and Adam Clayton.
Final conclusion and Betting Prediction
Middlesbrough have lost just once in their latest 11 home Premier League games against Spurs. Apparently Tottenham doesn’t feel so comfortable when facing Boro but Mauricio Pochettino’s reign opens completely different chapter for the North London club and he won’t be impressed by the past. On other hand we can see that Spurs have won 22 of their last 24 EPL matches against newly-promoted teams and Middlesbrough must be afraid from that.
We find really good value in odds for “Both teams to score” and we have it as a winning market in 4 from all 5 Premier League matches of Boro so far. Of course, Tottenham are the first top side to “welcome” Middlesbrough back in the league and we’re quite sure Spurs don’t want to leave good memories for their opponents after that game.
Question is how capable Middlesbrough’s attack is and except questionable Cristhian Stuani, we also recognize his fellow countryman Gastón Ramírez, as well as experienced winger Stewart Downing and former Man City striker Alvaro Negredo. Danish forward Viktor Fischer remains backup so far and he can also be an option in particular moment of the match. “Both teams to score – Yes“.
Venue: “Riverside Stadium”, Middlesbrough.
Referee: Graham Scott.
Possible starting lineups of Middlesbrough and Tottenham
Middlesbrough FC: Víctor Valdes – George Friend, Ben Gibson, Daniel Ayala, Antonio Barragan – Marten de Roon, Adam Forshaw – Stewart Downing, Gaston Ramirez, Cristhian Stuani – Alvaro Negredo. (4-2-3-1)
Tottenham Hotspur: Hugo Lloris – Danny Rose, Jan Vertonghen, Toby Alderweireld, Kyle Walker – Victor Wanyama, Mousa Dembele – Heung-Min Son, Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen – Vincent Janssen. (4-2-3-1)