Tottenham – Hull (City) Preview


As the 2014/15 English Premier League season comes to a close, there isn’t much to play for and everything to play for. Tottenham is facing some familiar faces this Saturday, as the welcome Hull (City?) Tigers to White Hart Lane. Tottenham (kinda) have an Europa league place to play while Hull has their EPL lives to play for. This could very well be a neutral friendly match.

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Tottenham comes in very much not in form, after losing 3-0 to Stoke City the previous game, a lost to Man City, and a 2-2 draw to Southampton. Normally, this match would be most welcome for Spurs, but it’s painfully obvious that Spurs have been on vacation since the Capital One Cup Finals.

Hull City is coming into the match with their own set of issues. Up until about a month ago, Hull has been safe and away from the relegation scrap. However, with Leicester City going on a title winning run of form, Hull has been dragged into the relegation scrap and is currently sitting a 18th. Hull desperately needs a win at White Hart Lane to give them a fighting chance on the last day of the season to survive. Hull is the proverbial wounded animal trapped on three sides right now.

I expect Tottenham to try new things this match. The backline either through injuries or suspensions will be making shift again. Danny Rose’s health concerns seem to have passed, so he should slot into left back. Jan and Fazio should continue their center back pairing, give the lack of talent in Hull’s attack. (Sir) Eric Dier should get playing time at right back, with Kyle Walker still injured and Deandre Yedlin not up to speed. If Spurs do have a commanding lead going into the 80th minute, expect Yedlin to get a run out though.

The Spurs midfield is a mess, but if Dembele or Paulihno is healthy, I hope they replace Ryan Mason. Mason has been serviceable, but appears gassed from his first true season in the top flight. This match also is a great time to either put players in the shop window or give youth players a run out. So, spurs fans, expect more wild and crazy times as no real midfielder will cover the Spurs backline. Hooray for chaos.

On the flanks and at the spear of the midfield three, expect Nacer Chadli, Christian Eriksen, and Erik Lamela to continue to inter-change and try to figure out who will get the sold/bench in favor of the return of Gareth Bale.

Up top, leading the line will probably be a double/triple marked Harry Kane. However, do not be surprised if Solado is given a chance to shine. And by shine, I mean a chance to put him in the shop window for a Spanish club to come and buy. I don’t want Solado to go (that title is reserved for Adebayor), but we are closer to Solado leaving them him returning to Spanish International form. Call it the Torres effect.

In goal, expect a swan song for American international Brad Freidel, who this week announced his retirement from football. This being the last home match of the season, it’s one of the few things besides running out a few youth prospects that will be welcomed by the fans. Brad has been a tonic between the pipes after the heartburn that Gomes was before his arrival. Brad, as well help ease the transition to Hugo Lloris without putting any undue pressure on the French captain. As we have seen how Lamela has needed so much time to start to come good, as well as the disaster that Solado has had to deal with, giving players a chance to take their time to being ready to play is just as important as playing regularly. For that, Brad, we thank you. Most importantly, Brad brought TottenhAmerica back to Spurs and that is most important (to me).

Finally, Tottenham welcomes back former captain Michael Dawson, as well as former players Tom Huddlestone and academy product Jake Livermore(edit: it looks like Livermore won’t be playing). Hopefully those players get warm applauses but leave with a loss.

When a team is going through trouble times, Dr. Tottenham is here to fix what ails you. I predict 2-0 Hull City Saturday and Spurs attempt try to avoid Europa continues.