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OPPONENTS Watford at Vicarage Road
COMPETITION Premier League 
PREVIEW Tottenham's visit to Vicarage Road should have been a home match, but he Premier League and Watford agreed to switch the game to the Hornet's nest, which is where the Hertfordshire club would like the League Cup tie switched to instead of travelling to Milton Keynes (which I think most people might prefer).  While this match continues the run of "away" fixtures, the win over Manchester United showed that the team do not need to have a home base to record good victories.

Watford appear much more solid this season and although this might be the first big test of their campaign, having beaten Burnley, Brighton and Palace, they look well organised and in Roberto Pereyra they have a midfielder who drives them forward.  His experience with Juventus has helped add something to the Watford side and he ahs the ability to follow attacks, arriving to finish, sometimes with devastating effect.

There haven't been many new additions not the Watford side during the summer, with the permanent signing of loan winger Gerald Deulofeu from Barcelona and goalkeeper Ben Foster from West Bromwich Albion being the most notable.  A few of their buys have been ones for the future, who will be introduced gradually.  The striking partnership of Andre Gray and Troy Deeney will be relied on to get the bulk of their goals, with Stefano Okoka as back up.  Nigerian striker Isaac Success is being brought back into the side after a drop off in form after his initial impact.  All the strikers are strong and will provide a physical test for our defenders.

The defence is not that impressive on paper, but are getting an understanding to shut down the strikers of the other teams.  Craig Cathcart, Daryl Janmaat, Jose Holebas and Christian Kabasele are the preferred back four, with all likely to be reinstated after the League Cup tie saw them rested.  Janmaat and Holebas like to get forward, while Kabasele is a danger at set-pieces.  Miguel Britos, Sebastian Prodl and Adrian Mariappa are all in reserve and have Premier League experience, but all have an error in their game that could cost Watford if they are selected.  New signings Marc Navarro from Espanyol and Adam Masina from Nologna have probably jumped ahead of these defenders, with Kiko Femenia and Marvin Zeegelaar also available.  Youngster Ben Wilmot interested Spurs, but Watford nipped in to buy him from Stevenage.

The midfield is a strong area for Watford, with Swede Ken Sema coming in during the transfer window, joining youngster Domingos Quina from West Ham United London, with them trying to displace former Man United man Tom Cleverley, ex-Chelsea midfielder Nathan Chalobah, Will Hughes - formerly of Derby and Abdoulaye Doucoure, who Spurs were linked to over the last year.  Doucoure is an all-action midfielder, who gets in tackles and covers a lot of ground, while Chalobah has made the decision to get first team action away from Stamford Bridge and has a good range of passing to go with a physical presence in the centre of the side. 

Some familiar faces can be found among the Hornets' ranks, but it is unlikely that Heurelho Gomes will play, having been pushed down the pecking order with Foster's arrival, nor will Younes Kaboul, who is busier slagging off Mauricio Pochettino than being given a squad number by Watford.  One who will play is Etienne Capoue, so it will be interesting to assess if Gracia has been able to add some discipline to the Frenchman's game.  He has the talent, but his lack of concentration and defensive mindedness allows opposition sides to get through the Watford midfield.

Spurs will not find this as easy as in previous years and without Hugo Lloris and Erik Lamela a doubt, the game will be a little more difficult.  We have looked as though we are finding our game after the tiring summer the majority of the squad had at the World Cup.  Some of the closing down which is a feature of Pochettino's philosophy has returned and the slick counter-attacking style has been used to good effect and it might well be needed on Sunday.  Watford will be looking to extend their good start, but might be willing to do it by attacking Spurs rather than trying to shut them out, but this might play into our hands and I would take a narrow win to keep us up with Chelsea and Liverpool.
 

PREDICTION Watford    1        Tottenham Hotspur    2
 
 
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Premier League Kick off 16:00
 
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Crowd :   , Weather :  -
Referee : Andre Marriner (West Midlands) Assistant Referees :  Mr. Scott Ledger; Mr. Dan Cook
Fourth Official :  Martin Atkinson  
- -  kicked off and played towards the - end in the first half.
Game time : -  90 + ? minutes.
 
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Manager :  Javi Gracia Manager :  Mauricio Pochettino
Sponsor :   FXPro Shirt sponsor :  AIA
Kit Supplier :  adidas Kit Supplier :   Nike
Match report

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What you thought
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Other scores during this week :
Brighton & Hove Albion 2 Fulham 2 Saturday
Chelsea 2 Bournemouth 0 Saturday
Crystal Palace 0 Southampton 2 Saturday
Everton 1 Huddersfield Town 1 Saturday
Leicester City 1 Liverpool 2 Saturday
Manchester City 2 Newcastle United 1 Saturday
West Ham United London 0 Wolverhampton Wanderers 1 Saturday
Cardiff City - - - -day
Arsenal - - - -day
Burnley - - - -day
Manchester United - - - -day

 

   

 

League Table  2018-19
  P W D L F A Pts GD
1 Liverpool 4 4 0 0 9 1 12 +8
2 Chelsea 4 4 0 0 10 3 12 +7
3 Manchester City 4 3 1 0 11 3 10 +8
4 TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 3 3 0 0 8 2 9 +6
5 Watford 3 3 0 0 7 2 9 +5
6 Leicester City 4 3 0 1 8 6 9 +2
7 Bournemouth 4 2 1 1 6 5 7 +1
8 Everton 4 1 3 0 7 6 6 +1
9 Wolverhampton Wanderers 4 1 2 1 4 5 5 -1
10 Southampton 4 1 1 2 4 4 4 0
11 Fulham 4 1 1 2 7 9 4 -2
12 Brighton & Hove Albion 4 1 1 2 5 7 4 -2
13 Arsenal 3 1 0 2 5 6 3 -1
14 Manchester United 3 1 0 2 4 7 3 -3
15 Crystal Palace 4 1 0 3 3 6 3 -3
16 Cardiff City 3 0 2 1 0 2 2 -2
17 Huddersfield Town 4 0 2 2 2 10 2 -8
18 Newcastle United 4 0 1 3 3 6 1 -3
19 Burnley 3 0 1 2 3 7 1 -4
20 West Ham United London 4 0 0 4 2 10 0 -8

 

Position before match :  4th
Position after match : 
Position after the weekend :

 

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