Tottenham Hotspur Draw Leicester City in the Third Round of the FA Cup

Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /

Tottenham Hotspur will be facing Leicester City at White Hart Lane on January 9th in the third round of the FA Cup.

For the time being, 31 days before Tottenham will be facing Leicester in the third round of the FA Cup. Yesterday’s draw pits two excellent clubs that are at the top of their game. The current Premier League leaders, Leicester City, one of the pleasant surprises this season. Against, a dark horse Tottenham team that has yet to lose since their first match of the season and have remained unbeaten in 14 consecutive league games.

It’s truly a battle of heavyweights when looking at the Tale of the Tape below:

Tottenham Hotspur vs Leicester City

RELATED: Spurs Ladies Draw Swindon Town in Women’s FA Cup

Based on the numbers above between both clubs, it’s safe to say that it will be another balanced matchup. Earlier this year, on August 22nd at the King Power Stadium the game would end in a 1-1 draw following Riyad Mahrez’s equalizer a minute after Dele Alli had given Tottenham a late lead in the 81st minute.

Since that game, both teams have only lost once and are the only two clubs to still have one loss in the league table. Tottenham dropped their opening game of the season at Old Trafford against Manchester United. Whereas Leicester lost to Arsenal at home in their seventh game of the Premier League.

The stats might favor Spurs’ offense in average possession, pass accuracy and shots but the Foxes hold the edge when it comes to goals per game thanks to a deadly scoring duo of Jamie Vardy (14 goals) and Riyad Mahrez (12 goals) who have combined for 24 goals between the two players alone.

Now although Tottenham’s clear goal scorer is Harry Kane with 8 goals in the Premier League. Spurs are a bit more balanced out than Leicester when Dele Alli can contribute with three goals and then have three players each tie with two goals apiece: Érik Lamela, Mousa Dembélé and Christian Eriksen.

It’s been said time and time again that if Harry Kane loses his form or gets injured who will carry Tottenham to score goals and win games? Well, Son Heung-min has proven to score goals for club and country: Hamburger SV, Bayer Leverkusen last season, Tottenham this year and South Korea at the international level. Not to mention Spurs’ balanced approach of having multiple goal scorers as mentioned above.

Should Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez suffer a drop in form or get injured, can Claudio Ranieri rely on others to pick up the slack? It wouldn’t be impossible for the Foxes but it will be difficult to no doubt. That being said, Leicester have shown the ability to come back late to draw or win from behind.

Defensively, it’s hard to argue that Tottenham aren’t a bit better than Leicester City — tackles per game and yellow cards accumulated notwithstanding. As a team overall? Spurs this year are built from the back, first and foremost.

More from Hotspur HQ

At goal is Hugo Lloris as usual, Tottenham’s number one goalkeeper. In front of him has been the most consistent backline in Mauricio Pochettino’s tenure since he took over last May: Danny Rose, Jan Vertonghen, Toby Alderweireld and Kyle Walker. Central midfield consists of Eric Dier and Dele Alli. Combined, Spurs’ ‘keeper, backline and double pivot have seven players who have played in a majority of the Premier League this season.

Then of course you have Christian Eriksen, Son Heung-min and Érik Lamela to fill out the three attacking midfield positions with Harry Kane as the lone striker. Substitutes would be recurring players such as Mousa Dembélé, Ryan Mason, Clinton N’Jie and even Josh Onomah.

Leicester themselves, have a good club as well. There’s a reason why they’re atop the league table. Praise has been hailed upon Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez for obvious reasons, but let’s not forget goalkeeper Kasper Schemeical. Defenders: Wes Morgan, Jeffrey Schlupp and Danny Simpson. Midfielders: Marc Albrighton Danny Drinkwater and Andy King. And forwards: Shinji Okazaki and Leonardo Ulloa.

Next: Is Spurs' Eric Dier Falling Back to Earth?

As stated earlier, this third round cup tie will be another balanced game between two very good teams managed by two very good managers in Mauricio Pochettino and Claudio Ranieri. The FA Cup is the last domestic cup competition that Tottenham are currently in. Will Pochettino decide to go as far as possible in the FA Cup or focus more on the Europa League and Premier League instead?