Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool - Match Preview, Stats & Team News

Tottenham will be hoping to avoid a repeat of last season's meetings with Liverpool. The Reds beat them 9-0 on aggregate in the Premier League meetings last season, including a 5-0 win at White Hart Lane which ended up costing Andre Villas-Boas his job. However, it has a feel of a different Tottenham side, whilst there are many new faces in the Liverpool team.

To be played on Sunday 31st August 2014 at 13:30. Venue: White Hart Lane, London.

Odds: Tottenham Hotspur 13/8, Draw 5/2, Liverpool 7/4

Last season: 0-5

Preview & injury news

Two wins from two, progression to the Europa League group stage and top of the Premier League in the early stages of the season, it has been a good start for Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino. In their games so far they have got a gutsy win against West Ham United on the opening day as well as a comprehensive victory against Queens Park Rangers. The visit of Liverpool provides Pochettino with the toughest test of his reign so far. 

As for Liverpool, they know they were in for a difficult start to the season when they found out they were opening up with two fixtures they lost last season. They started with a win at home to Southampton but were well beaten by Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium on Monday night. The Reds will be looking to bounce back with a win at a ground that - last season aside - hasn't been very kind to them, in order to put a marker down and show they are still a side that can challenge for the Premier League title.

On the injury front, Tottenham have two injury worries. Roberto Soldado missed the Europa League second leg against AEL Limassol with a neck injury, whilst Kyle Walker is still struggling with a lengthy groin injury.

Liverpool's early season injury list is a little more expensive as they count the cost of their defeat to City. Glen Johnson pulled up with a thigh injury and couldn't finish the game at the Etihad Stadium whilst the Reds may give Alberto Moreno every chance to prove his fitness after straining his ankle. Martin Skrtel is a slight doubt after picking up a knock whilst this game may be too early for Jon Flanagan to return after a knee problem. Adam Lallana could be in line for a place in the squad after he returned to full training last week following a knee injury. Daniel Agger - whose future on Merseyside is still uncertain - will miss out with a knee injury.

Key stats

  Total Scoring AttPossession PercentageError Lead To ShotAccurate PassPlayed
Tottenham Hotspur 18 65.00 1 619 1
Liverpool 11 47.00 0 441 1

Here are some statistics from the two team's encounters last weekend. It shows a dominant performance from Tottenham as they thrashed QPR with 65% possession, along with 18 scoring attempts. The one thing that Pochettino will want to eradicate is the error that led to a shot in the game.

For Liverpool, despite their defeat they showed they carried a threat with their 11 attempts on goal against Man City and had a decent share of possession. Given the way the first goal they conceded came about on Monday night, along with some suspect defending for the third in their 3-1 defeat, it's perhaps surprising that it reads there are no errors that led to a shot.

5 players to watch

Federico Fazio - It's unclear whether Mauricio Pochettino will throw Fazio in at the deep end by handing him his debut on Sunday, but he is an option. Fazio was bought in order to strengthen their defence, and it will be interesting to see how he slots him should he get the opportunity against Liverpool on Sunday.

Mario Balotelli - Balotelli's switch from Milan to Liverpool was probably the one that raised the most eyebrows this summer, but he is a player that gives the side a bit more flexibility. Several of the Italian's teammates hope he will be involved on Sunday, and if he is, they will hope he can mark his debut with a goal in a key early season encounter.

Christian Eriksen - The lively creator in the Spurs midfield, Eriksen's guile and craft could cause Liverpool problems, especially given their defence is only just getting to know each other. He was starting to find his feet at Spurs towards the end of last season, but if he produces in a big encounter like this one he could become even more of a talisman for the side this season.

Lazar Markovic - With his first two touches of his debut against Manchester City, Markovic displayed a player that was technically very good and not short of confidence, so whichever full-back that faces up to him could face a tough afternoon, if the Serbian starts. It would be interesting to see what he could do for a sustained spell on the field rather than a cameo performance.

Emmanuel Adebayor - When he has faced Liverpool in the past, Adebayor has given them problems. He didn't face them during either encounter last season, and as a result their back line had an easy time of it. If the forward shows his best form on Sunday he could be a real danger.

Last time they met

Liverpool 4-0 Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League, March 2014

It was another thrashing for Tottenham at the hands of one of the title chasers, and another big win for Liverpool as they went on a formidable looking winning run. The Reds opened the scoring within two minutes as Younes Kaboul put through his own net from a Raheem Sterling cross. The lead was doubled when Luis Suarez capitalised on Michael Dawson's introduction into the action after he replaced Jan Vertonghen, with the Uruguayan firing low past Hugo Lloris. Liverpool had more chances but it was ten minutes after the half when Philippe Coutinho made it 3-0. With a quarter of an hour remaining a Jordan Henderson free-kick missed everyone to find the net, and round off the scoring.

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