|OPPONENTS||Watford at Vicarage Road|
Tottenham's visit to Vicarage Road should have been a home match,
but he Premier League and Watford agreed to switch the game to the
Hornet's nest, which is where the Hertfordshire club would like the
League Cup tie switched to instead of travelling to Milton Keynes
(which I think most people might prefer). While this match
continues the run of "away" fixtures, the win over Manchester United
showed that the team do not need to have a home base to record good
Watford appear much more solid this season and although this might be the first big test of their campaign, having beaten Burnley, Brighton and Palace, they look well organised and in Roberto Pereyra they have a midfielder who drives them forward. His experience with Juventus has helped add something to the Watford side and he ahs the ability to follow attacks, arriving to finish, sometimes with devastating effect.
There haven't been many new additions not the Watford side during the summer, with the permanent signing of loan winger Gerald Deulofeu from Barcelona and goalkeeper Ben Foster from West Bromwich Albion being the most notable. A few of their buys have been ones for the future, who will be introduced gradually. The striking partnership of Andre Gray and Troy Deeney will be relied on to get the bulk of their goals, with Stefano Okoka as back up. Nigerian striker Isaac Success is being brought back into the side after a drop off in form after his initial impact. All the strikers are strong and will provide a physical test for our defenders.
The defence is not that impressive on paper, but are getting an understanding to shut down the strikers of the other teams. Craig Cathcart, Daryl Janmaat, Jose Holebas and Christian Kabasele are the preferred back four, with all likely to be reinstated after the League Cup tie saw them rested. Janmaat and Holebas like to get forward, while Kabasele is a danger at set-pieces. Miguel Britos, Sebastian Prodl and Adrian Mariappa are all in reserve and have Premier League experience, but all have an error in their game that could cost Watford if they are selected. New signings Marc Navarro from Espanyol and Adam Masina from Nologna have probably jumped ahead of these defenders, with Kiko Femenia and Marvin Zeegelaar also available. Youngster Ben Wilmot interested Spurs, but Watford nipped in to buy him from Stevenage.
The midfield is a strong area for Watford, with Swede Ken Sema coming in during the transfer window, joining youngster Domingos Quina from West Ham United London, with them trying to displace former Man United man Tom Cleverley, ex-Chelsea midfielder Nathan Chalobah, Will Hughes - formerly of Derby and Abdoulaye Doucoure, who Spurs were linked to over the last year. Doucoure is an all-action midfielder, who gets in tackles and covers a lot of ground, while Chalobah has made the decision to get first team action away from Stamford Bridge and has a good range of passing to go with a physical presence in the centre of the side.
Some familiar faces can be found among the Hornets' ranks, but it is unlikely that Heurelho Gomes will play, having been pushed down the pecking order with Foster's arrival, nor will Younes Kaboul, who is busier slagging off Mauricio Pochettino than being given a squad number by Watford. One who will play is Etienne Capoue, so it will be interesting to assess if Gracia has been able to add some discipline to the Frenchman's game. He has the talent, but his lack of concentration and defensive mindedness allows opposition sides to get through the Watford midfield.
Spurs will not find this as
easy as in previous years and without Hugo Lloris and Erik Lamela a
doubt, the game will be a little more difficult. We have
looked as though we are finding our game after the tiring summer the
majority of the squad had at the World Cup. Some of the
closing down which is a feature of Pochettino's philosophy has
returned and the slick counter-attacking style has been used to good
effect and it might well be needed on Sunday. Watford will be
looking to extend their good start, but might be willing to do it by
attacking Spurs rather than trying to shut them out, but this might
play into our hands and I would take a narrow win to keep us up with
Chelsea and Liverpool.
|PREDICTION||Watford 1 Tottenham Hotspur 2|
|Premier League||Kick off 16:00|
Tottenham Hotspur 1 (0)
Deeney 68m 06s
|Crowd : 20,141||Weather : Sunny, warm|
|Referee : Andre Marriner (West Midlands)||Assistant Referees : Mr. Scott Ledger; Mr. Dan Cook|
|Fourth Official : Martin Atkinson|
|Spurs kicked off and played towards the Rookery Stand end in the first half.|
|Game time : - 90 + 8 minutes.|
Capoue (foul on Vertonghen) 52
Success (standing in front of a throw-in) 90+3
Dembele (foul on Hughes) 68
|Watford :||kit||Tottenham Hotspur :||kit|
Will HUGHES (14
Andre GRAY (10
Isaac SUCCESS 70 )
Harry KANE (c)
|Manager : Javi Gracia||Manager : Mauricio Pochettino|
|Sponsor : FXPro||Shirt sponsor : AIA|
|Kit Supplier : adidas||Kit Supplier : Nike|
Spurs succumbed to a bullish Watford side, having taken the lead through an own goal, but getting stung at two free-kicks by the Hornets. It was a disappointment after beating Manchester United, but Tottenham rarely got into their stride, despite having chances to take the three points.
Mauricio Pochettino had
scelection problems, with Hugo Lloris injured in training forcing a
change to be made, so Michel Vorm took the gloves and Eric Dier was
dropped to the subs bench as Davinson Sanchez was brought in to add
height to protect Vorm. While you would have thought Watford
would have tried to pressurise Vorm, they had an early long throw,
but it did not create a chance and Spurs hit back with Kane going
left to try and square for Lucas and then Moura himself tried the
same from the right after turning and skinning Kabasele. The Watford
defender had to be alert when Kane got on the end of a long ball
from Alderweireld and won a corner, from which Kabasele got a kick
in the head from Sanchez as he tried a donkey kick to the ball as it
So, it was Watford who kept
their 100% record and probably deserved it on their second half
performance. Not that they were great, but in the end, we were
bullied out of the game. Not just by the referee’s allowance for the
physical approach, but not being strong enough to face up to the
home team. Pochettino went with a side that would be strong in the
air and that was where both of Watford’s goals came from. For
all Dembele's excellent work against Man U he was not influential
today and got caught on the ball, as teams are now closing him down
quickly, Eriksen and Trippier's crossing was failing to find Spurs
shirts and Dele worked hard, but was not hurting Watford as he has
done in the past.
Christian Kabasele played his 200th career match.
Played his 50th Watford game.
This was Watford's first Premier League win over Spurs.
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|What you thought|
|Other scores during this week :|
|Brighton & Hove Albion||2||Fulham||2||Saturday|
|Manchester City||2||Newcastle United||1||Saturday|
|West Ham United London||0||Wolverhampton Wanderers||1||Saturday|
|League Table 2018-19|
|14||Brighton & Hove Albion||4||1||1||2||5||7||4||-2|
|20||West Ham United London||4||0||0||4||2||10||0||-8|
Position before match :
Position after match : 5th
Position after the weekend : 5th
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