Tottenham Hotspur’s clash in the capital against Liverpool this afternoon is a Premier League showpiece showdown heavily wrapped in intrigue. Spurs are ten points and six places clear of the Reds in the standings, though both clubs have been drawing criticism for their limp domestic displays of late. Can Tottenham topple the Merseysiders for the first time since 2017?
As per the norm, we’ve assembled a stats pack for this afternoon’s contest below which has buckets of info from a number of metrics that you should be able to turn into stronger bet builder coupons later on. Use my Stats Pack Guide if you’re struggling for inspiration.
Heung-min Son fractured his cheekbone against Marseille on Tuesday evening and his absence is a huge blow to Tottenham’s chances today. Son joins Richarlison and defender Cristian Romero on the sidelines.
Dejan Kulusevski is in contention to come back into the XI to replace Son, though it seems Conte is deploying Ivan Perisic alongside Harry Kane up top. Is that 6 defenders in the side?
Arthur, Joel Matip, Luis Diaz, Naby Keita and Diogo Jota are all still out injured for Liverpool, while James Milner is a slight doubt after he picked up a heady injury during the week.
Ibrahima Konate and Joe Gomez will battle it out for a spot at centre-half alongside Virgil van Dijk. Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Darwin Nunez should continue up front.
Tottenham’s underlying stats for the campaign look ill-fitting for a team in third place and Spurs’ xG, shots and shots on target figures are worryingly well-balanced in either direction.
Remarkably, only four clubs in the division – including three of the current bottom five – have conceded more shots per 90 (14.70) than Tottenham so far.
Similarly, Liverpool’s numbers for the campaign don’t seem to marry with their league position down in 9th spot. The Reds have been clocking more attempts than any other team in the EPL (17.70 p/90) and no club has been hitting more shots on target (6.17).
Liverpool have also been winning more corners (8.00 p/90) than anyone else, while their xG is the league’s third-loftiest. Only Man City have been collected fewer cards than Klopp’s clean tacklers.
Player Shots and Shots on Target
Harry Kane (3.58 shots p/90) and Heung-min Son (3.15) continue to do most of the heavy lifting for Tottenham in the final third, but with the latter out injured, Lucas Moura (0.20 shots per game) or Dejan Kulusevski (1.40 attempts per game) will have greater responsibility to bear.
Midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (1.18 shots p/90) and Rodrigo Bentancur (0.81) can offer a semblance of threat from deeper positions, though you get the sense that if Liverpool nullify Kane today, they will shackle Spurs completely.
Liverpool were gunned down by Leeds at Anfield last weekend, though their front three of Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Darwin Nunez still managed to muster a huge 14 attempts between them.
That trio have dominated the shooting metrics on the red half of Merseyside this season, so expect them to feature prominently again this afternoon.
Centre-half Virgil van Dijk could be an interesting pick at longer odds in the shot markets today. The Dutchman has lodged at least one attempt in eight of his 12 Premier League appearances since the summer.
Player Goals and Assists
Ryan Sessegnon, Ben Davies and Rodrigo Bentancur scored the goals that sparked an epic comeback victory for Tottenham at Bournemouth last week, though Harry Kane is still the club’s leading marksman in the league by a distance.
With Heung-min Son sidelined, Danish midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg is Spurs’ next-most prolific player, though the 27-year-old has notched just twice in his last ten league runouts.
Ivan Perisic meanwhile, has provided an assist in each of his last three appearances in all competitions and is much more of an attacking threat as a striker today.
Mohamed Salah has rattled the net seven times in his last seven games for Liverpool, however, just two of those were registered in the Premier League with the other five notched in the UCL.
Darwin Nunez has also looked the part on the continent, though his performances domestically continue to be ‘boom-bust’ and despite netting twice in his last four Premier League appearances, the Uruguayan has missed a hatful of chances.
Roberto Firmino remains the club’s top scorer in the English top flight, though the Brazilian has gone four matches in the division without impacting the scoresheet.
Tottenham Hotspur Cards
Rodrigo Bentancur (four cards) and Yves Bissouma (three cards) could make up two-thirds of a combative midfield trio today for Tottenham and both players tackle hard enough to provide excellent options in the card markets in North London.
If as expected, Ivan Perisic, is handed a starting berth at striker, the veteran could struggle to handle a completely new position.
Brazilian Fabinho’s (fouled 0.77 times p/90) battle with Uruguayan Bentancur in the midfield engine room has the potential to produce sparks this afternoon, while Yves Bissouma’s physicality should ruffle a few of Harvey Elliot’s (fouled 1.38 times per 90) feathers.
Mohamed Salah is a notable omission from our list, though the Egyptian could have far too much running power for Ivan Perisic down the Liverpool right. If Salah breaks clear of the Spurs wingback, the Croatian will break out his more nefarious skillset.
Match-Ups to watch
Rodrigo Bentancur vs Thiago Alcantara
Yves Bissouma vs Harvey Elliott
Ivan Perisic vs Fabinho
Nervous defenders Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold (two cards each) both leap off the page as strong caution candidates for Liverpool today. Both World Cup hopefuls have suffered from error-strewn performances this season and they could wilt under pressure again this afternoon. Ibrahima Konate takes Gomez’s place, and may well replace his fouls too.
South American pair Fabinho (two cards) and Darwin Nunez (1.25 fouls p/90) could also be worth your consideration for differing reasons. Fabinho can be cynical when stopping counter attacks, while Nunez can tackle with frustration when things aren’t going his way.
Tottenham schemer Pierre-Emile Højbjerg has been fouled 0.8 times per game in the Premier League this season, making him Spurs’ most-fouled midfielder. The Dane could be targeted by Fabinho today.
Clément Lenglet (fouled 0.5 times p/90) has been on the end of more ill-timed challenges than any of his defensive counterparts at Spurs this term and the Frenchman could be ruffed by Nunez.
Harry Kane (fouled 1.41 times p/90) has the strength and guile to unsettle Joe Gomez or Ibrahima Konaté, depending on who starts at the heart of Liverpool’s defence. Either centre-half could be a good addition to your coupon today.
Match-Ups to watch
Fabinho vs Pierre-Emile Højbjerg
Darwin Nunez vs Clément Lenglet
Ibrahima Konate vs Harry Kane
My Picks of the Stats Pack
Here’s an example of what sort of selections you can get from the stats pack, and if you were to back them all on Betfair it’d come in at 7/1.
Tottenham vs Liverpool
Liverpool average 8.00 corners p/90.
Tottenham average 4.46 corners conceded per 90.
Trent Alexander-Arnold ranks 4th for crosses.
Referee Andy Madley averages 2.91 cards per game.
Tottenham average 2.08 cards per game.
Liverpool average 1.17 cards per game.
Harry Kane has scored 10 goals in 13 appearances.
Harry Kane has received 4 cards in 13 appearances.
Tottenham score 2.00 goals per game.
Roberto Firmino has averaged 2.07 shots on target per 90, and 3.34 shots per 90.
Roberto Firmino has scored 6 goals in 11 appearances.
Liverpool average 6.17 shots on target per game.
Tottenham concede 4.15 shots on target per game.
Goals for: 2.00
Goals against: 1.23
xG for: 1.73
xG against: 1.72
Goals for: 1.92
Goals against: 1.25
xG for: 2.43
xG against: 1.31