Mauricio Pochettino has some key decisions to make as his side host Spanish giants Barcelona in the Wembley Stadium.
Tottenham vs Barcelona – Champions League 2018/19
Venue : Wembley Stadium
Date : Wednesday, 3 October 2018
Kick-off : 8 PM BST
TV channel : BT Sport 2
The Spurs are without a number of first team starters as they face a dominating Barcelona side in just their second match of Group B in the Champions League.
Tottenham will look to bring their Champions League campaign back on track after a 2-1 loss to Inter Milan in their first group stage match.
With key players injured, Mauricio Pochettino faces a huge decision regarding the team selection. While in the Premier League that hasn’t affected them yet as they won 2-0 against Huddersfield in the weekend and currently sit on 4th place.
Tottenham play possession based football with building their attack from the back. They build the play around the striker and when the opportunity is there they pass it to him and the striker, that is, Harry Kane finishes the move.
Meanwhile Barcelona dominated PSV Eindhoven in the first group stage match at the Camp Nou with a 4-0 victory to their name.
Despite the 1-1 draw against Athletic Bilbao in the weekend, Barca currently sit on top of the La Liga table above Real Madrid.
During the weekend Tottenham started with a 3-4-2-1 formation but they are expected to revert back to a 4-2-3-1 formation with Harry Kane leading the attack. Meanwhile, Barcelona are expected to started in a 4-3-3 formation with Dembele Suarez and Messi leading the line for them.
Team News :
Cristian Eriksen and Moussa Dembele are ruled out with abdominal and thigh injuries.
Serge Aurier is still recovering from is thigh injury and is likely to miss out.
Jan Vertonghen joins Dele Alli in the sidelines with an hamstring injury.
The Spurs have been given a boost in goal as Hugo Lloris has been declared fit and is set to start against Barcelona.
Samuel Umtiti is recovering from a knee injury and is ruled out.
Sergi Roberto was forced off in the weekend match against Athletic Bilbao due to a muscular injury. In his absence Nelson Semedo is expected to start at right back.
Head to Head
This will be only the third match between Tottenham and Barcelona, the last being in April 1982 in the semi-finals of Winners’ Cup which Barca won 2-1 on aggregate.
Barcelona have lost just one out of their 11 Champions League games against English clubs (W8 D2 L1), their last two visits to England in this competition being a draw against Chelsea last season and a loss to Manchester City in 2016/17.
Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has won only once in nine outings against Barcelona as a manager in all competitions (D3 L5), all with former club Espanyol.
Spurs have drawn only one out of their 12 home games in the Champions League (W7 L1 D4).
Team Form :
Despite their injury crisis, the Spurs have had a decent start to their season as they currently sit on 4th on the league table. Meanwhile in the Champions League, despite suffering a loss in their first game, they would look to turn it around.
Tottenham last 5 matches (all competitions) – LLWDW
Barcelona have had a impressive start to their Season as the sit on top the the La Liga. With having a win registered in as many games played in the Champions League, Barca will be hoping to maintain their 100 per cent record as they travel to London.
Barcelona last 5 matches (all competitions) – WWDLD
Betting Preview :
Tottenham face a major test of their Champions League credentials when they welcome off-colour Catalan giants Barcelona to Wembley Stadium on Tuesday night.
Tottenham threw away a late lead in their opening Champions League game to suffer a 2-1 defeat at Italy side Inter in their group opener. Barcelona had no such trouble trouncing Dutch side PSV Eindhoven 4-0 at the Nou Camp.
Despite that win over PSV, all is not well in the Barcelona camp, as the Spanish champions have now failed to win in three games, which is a crisis by Barcelona’s high standards. Tottenham heads into this game in decent form.
However, Barcelona are a tough team to beat and Tottenham lack Champions League know-how at times. That is why we are backing the draw in this one.
The next two bets we are backing are linked together. One is Harry Kane to score at anytime. The England international tends to score in patches and has now scored three goals in his last two top-flight matches. The brace against Huddersfield last time hints at a return in form.
The fact that Barcelona have been vulnerable in defence at times of late also helps Kane’s chances of netting, while it also leads into us backing the over 2.5 goals. With the attacking talent on show of the likes of Kane, Luis Suarez and of course Lionel Messi it is hard to see this game being low scoring.
The two team’s recent defensive records also suggest there will be goals, as both teams have kept just one clean sheet in their last six outings in all competitions.
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