International - UEFA Champions League - Group E - 18th October 2016 @ 19:45
Leverkusen entertain Tottenham knowing that their Champions League hopes are dependent on them securing a result against Tottenham. The positive side for Leverkusen is the they have been in great form scoring up front, netting goals in 9 out of their 10 games played this season so far. They have picked up positive victories against teams like Mainz, Dortmund and Hamburg; but have generally struggled to convert victories which sees them in 10th spot only in the table. Chicharito and Pohjanpalo have netted 9 out of their 11 goals in the domestic front, so a lot will rely on them. They also have the free-kick specialist Calhangolu who can find the back of the net from anywhere of 30 yards out for Leverkusen. Where they have struggled is on the defensive end, conceding goals in 8 out of the 10 games played so far this campaign; and that will need to improve if they have to get out of this group.
Tottenham have had Harry Kane injured, but still continue to churn out results. They will be extremely happy about grabbing some solid victories against Manchester City, CSKA Moscow in recent weeks. This success was even done without Harry Kane in their lineup, which showcases the great supporting cast that they have developed with the likes of Son, Alli, Eriksen, Sissoko, Lamela and Janssen who are ready to carry on the load. Tottenham's biggest concern will be the absence of Alderweireld and the doubt on Danny Rose which has plagued them in recent weeks on the injury front. Tottenham have conceded goals in 3 out of their 5 games played away from home and particularly Alderweireld will be missed to keep this record.
Both teams will look to advance their Champions League hopes; with Tottenham in a decent position domestically, they can afford to over-commit on the European front; while Leverkusen have been generally very open and attacking in their play so you an expect goals from them. This should be an entertaining encounter, and I am backing both teams to score in this one.
17th October 2016 @ 17:46