In a fixture that is set to break the Premier League record in terms of attendance Tottenham will be hoping that they have additional reason to celebrate as they continue their hunt for a first Premier League win at this ground, today they play host to Bournemouth hoping that it will be fourth time lucky.
Tottenham’s first three matches at the national stadium have resulted in a loss to Chelsea and subsequent draws with Burnley and Swansea. The former Spurs fans will have taken reluctantly on the chin but the latter have been a cause for frustration.
But the frustration has thankfully dissipated due to Spurs’ very impressive form away from home. Four fixtures on the road have resulted in a maximum 12 points as they have rolled over everything that has been put in their path, not only that but they have scored 12 goals in the process.
Their astonishing away form was evident before the international break as they eased past newly promoted Huddersfield with a 4-0 win. Harry Kane picked up a brace that day as the plaudits continue to roll in for the England international.
And he proved what a talisman he is for England with two decisive goals in a pair of 1-0 wins over the course of the international break. September was a sensational for club and country, so much so that he was awarded the Premier League Player Of The Month yesterday.
The hope now is that the form now carries onto what is a very busy October, there’s not just a lot of fixtures but it also against some big opposition. Real Madrid lie in wait on Tuesday night with league fixtures against Liverpool and Manchester United therefore it’s almost imperative that they pick up all three points this aftenoon.
Standing in their way today are a Bournemouth side who are sitting second bottom in the Premier League with just four points to their name. This maybe the Cherries third consecutive campaign in the top flight but after two impressive seasons they are finally finding life tough at the highest level.
Their last outing before the break did see them add a very welcome point to the board as they played out a 0-0 stalemate with Leicester at The Vitality Stadium. It looks as if it may have be to small steps for Bournemouth but right now Eddie Howe could do with some giant strides.
The fact that they have only scored four goals in their first seven matches will be of obvious concern to manager and fans alike. Jermaine Defoe has only scored once since his summer signing from Sunderland, he will undoubtedly be disappointed with his return so far but he will look at today as a perfect opportunity to add to that tally.
Defoe had two spells with Tottenham and their is a mutual respect between him and Spurs fans although that respect will have to be put on hold if he starts this afternoon and there may even be a begrudging nod if he does manage to breach the net of Hugo Lloris.
But the key for Tottenham will be whether or not Bournemouth want to sit back and invite the pressure or try to play football themselves. Swansea did the former and it was a very long evening as it ended in a 0-0 draw while Huddersfield went toe and toe and suffered a quick knockout a fortnight ago.
If Eddie Howe admirably tries to play his own game then it may well be a suicidal move as that is exactly the game plan that Tottenham will need to come out on top this afternoon. If Bournemouth follow the Swansea model then Mauricio Pochettino may need a plan b.
People keep talking about Wembley and the millstone around Tottenham’s necks. A millstone they can only remove by finding that first league win. The previous three games I offered a prediction and got it wrong therefore I’m not offering a prediction especially as I am going there myself. See you on the other side.
This is what social media thinks will happen – you can still vote on the outcome
— Dan Tracey (@dantracey1983) October 13, 2017