Tottenham head to the south of France as masters of their own destiny this evening and if Spurs can earn a point from a tough test against Marseille, passage to the Champions League knockout rounds will be secured. However, a defeat to OM at the Stade Orange Vélodrome could turn Group D upside down on matchday six and demotion to the Europa League is still a possibility for the Londoners.
Below, you can find our stats pack for this evening’s game which is packed wall-to-wall with info on cards, corners, xG, shots, shots on target and more from the teams’ domestic campaigns. Take what you need from our research and my Stats Pack Guide to power your bet builders for the contest later on.
Marseille have few personnel issues at present with on-loan defender Eric Bailly listed as their only current injury absentee.
Valentin Rongier, Nuno Tavares and Alexis Sanchez were all named on the bench against Strasbourg at the weekend and all three players could be recalled to the XI this evening by Head Coach Igor Tudor.
Richarlison scored both goals when Tottenham beat Marseille 2-0 in September, though the Brazilian is sidelined with a calf injury and misses the return fixture today.
Cristiano Romero and Dejan Kulusevski weren’t spotted at Spurs’ open training session on Monday and both players are slight doubts as a result.
Marseille’s form has dipped domestically and a run of just one win from their last six matches in Ligue 1 has knocked them down to fifth in the table.
OM rank joint-seventh in France for goals scored (1.69) and joint-fifth for shots mustered (14.01) per 90, though they have been conceding slightly fewer attempts than Tottenham in the Champions League (10.20 to 10.80 p/90).
Marseille’s card count in Ligue 1 (2.31 p/90) and the Champions League (2.00 p/90) have both been high and they collected two yellows and a red when they played Spurs in September.
Tottenham remain among the front-runners in the Premier League, though they have been flying by the seat of their pants more often than the teams around them in England.
Spurs’ xG for and against, as well as their shot count in both directions are well matched, though they haven’t been quite as generous to opponents in the UCL where they have been conceding 10.8 shots per game. Tottenham have amassed 12 cards in just five Group D tussles so far.
Player Shots and Shots on Target
With Luis Suarez and Gerson unlikely to start this evening, Alexis Sanchez (2.40 shots p/90) and Nuno Tavares (2.44 shots p/90) jump off the page as two of your best options in the shot markets for Marseille.
As one former and one current Gunner, both Sanchez and Tavares will be keen to do some damage against Spurs. Alexis Sanchez (3.0) and Tavares (2.2) rank first and second at OM this term for average shots attempted per Champions League game.
Another former Arsenal player – Matteo Guendouzi – clocked more shots than any other Marseille player when the French outfit played Tottenham in London back in September (three).
Harry Kane (3.58 shots p/90) and Heung-min Son (3.15) continue to call the shots for Tottenham in the Premier League and the club’s deadly duo also occupy positions one and two in the Champions League shooting metrics, where they are averaging 3.0 and 2.8 attempts per game respectively.
Kane and Son had eight shots between them when Spurs beat OM in September. Beyond that terrifying twosome, pickings are relatively slim for Tottenham, though Rodrigo Bentancur and Matt Doherty had three strikes each against Frankfurt on matchday five, while Eric Dier had four against Die Adler.
Player Goals and Assists
33-year-old Alexis Sanchez remains an influential figure for Marseille and the veteran is the club’s leading scorer in Ligue 1 with four goals. Sanchez has also scored twice in the Champions League.
Mattéo Guendouzi also has two Champions League goals under his belt, while Ligue 1 assist king, Jonathan Claus, has created just one goal for his teammates in Europe.
Harry Kane is averaging just under one goal contribution per game in the Premier League, though he wasn’t involved in any of Tottenham’s efforts in their 3-2 comeback win against Bournemouth on Saturday.
Ivan Perisic bagged a fourth league assist of the campaign against the Cherries and the experienced Croatian has also made two goals in the UCL.
In the Champions League, Kane’s only goal so far has come from the spot against Eintracht Frankfurt. Heung-min Son and the injured Richarlison have notched twice each in the competition.
With four players with Arsenal connections (Sanchez, Guendouzi, Tavares, Kolasinac) likely to start for Marseille, this evening’s clash has a real North London Derby flavour to it and the tackles could fly as a result.
Nuno Tavares (four cards) and Matteo Guendouzi (two cards) in particular look like excellent card candidates at the Stade Orange Vélodrome. Both players have already been cautioned in the UCL this term.
Away from the ex-Gunners, Valentin Rongier could be an option to consider in midfield. The 27-year-old ranks first at OM for average fouls committed per game in the Champions League (2.6) and the anchorman has been a card machine in Ligue 1.
Harry Kane’s excellent hold-up skills are a crucial part of the attacking phases of Tottenham’s play and the England man tends to draw plenty of fouls when he has his back to goal. Valentin Rongier will be right on top of Kane when the Spurs striker drops deep this evening.
Matt Doherty or Emerson Royal should share a flank with Nuno Tavares later today, where the potential for a card looks high. Tavares committed two fouls when OM lost to Spurs in September.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has been Spurs’ most-fouled midfielder in the Champions League since August and his tussle with Matteo Guendouzi should be of interest.
Match-Ups to watch
Nuno Tavares vs Matt Doherty/Emerson Royal
Matteo Guendouzi vs Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg
Valentin Rongier vs Harry Kane
Tottenham Hotspur Cards
Several Tottenham players could really endear themselves to the Spurs faithful this evening with a couple of meaty challenges on ex-Arsenal employees and Rodrigo Bentancur, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Eric Dier are likeliest to dish out some punishment.
Bentancur has been carded four times in the Premier League and twice in the UCL this term, while Hojbjerg has also collected two continental bookings.
Dier picked up one of his two Champions League cautions against Marseille in September and the 28-year-old ranks second at Spurs in the competition for average fouls committed per game (1.8).
We expect the hot-tempered Matteo Guendouzi (fouled 1.90 times p/90) to be right at the heart of the action this evening and the 23-year-old seems certain to clash with Bentancur in midfield.
Alexis Sanchez has been fouled 2.0 times per Champions League appearance this season and Tottenham defender Eric Dier will be determined to keep that count high later on.
Despite his advancing years, Dimitri Payet (fouled 1.46 times p/90) can still win a game with one sweep of his magical right foot, so expect Hojbjerg to smother him as often as he can today.
Match-Ups to watch
Rodrigo Bentancur vs Matteo Guendouzi
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg vs Dimitri Payet
Eric Dier vs Alexis Sanchez