Southampton visit White Hart Lane to take on a Tottenham side that will be weakened by the loss of their star man, Harry Kane.
The England international’s injury has dominated Tottenham headlines since he exited the Millwall match last Sunday with an ankle injury. He is expected to be out for at least the next month.
Mauricio Pochettino will have to find a way to cover for the 23-year-old’s contributions, and that effort starts here against Southampton.
There are hardly any surprises in the lineup announced just before kickoff.
Pochettino once again decides to field a 3-4-2-1 formation, with almost identical components — but, of course, for Kane.
In his place will play Heung-min Son. That’s no surprise. It was the South Korean who came in for Kane last week, and subsequently scored a hat-trick. He was always the favorite to cover for Kane here.
Vincent Janssen sits on the bench however, the only other proper striker in the squad. If Son can’t break down Southampton, then expect to see Janssen fairly early in this match. Pochettino already committed to giving the Dutchman a second chance in his prematch press conference on Friday.
Son will be given his shot first. Check out our feature on how Tottenham will likely adjust to the 24-year-old’s unique style at striker.
Southampton also don’t rework the team that played so well in the EFL Cup and beat Watford last week. Tottenham’s backline will have to be very wary about the Manolo Gabbiadini. The Italian is enjoyed a particularly hot start to his Premier League career, and Spurs will have to remain vigilant.
He isn’t the only threat the Saints are bringing to bear. Nathan Redmond is an electrically fast player on the flank and will look to exploit whatever space he can in wide areas.
Oriol Romeu is enjoying a comeback this season as well at the base of midfield. With Christian Eriksen likely playing deeper to make up for Kane’s contributions, we can expect a battle between the two of them.
Tottenham will be relying heavily on their wing-backs though, with both Saints full-backs known more for their attacking then their defending. That area of the pitch might prove the most important in the match.
Check back here following the match for a full report.