After a fierce battle for the finish at the top, Leicester City had stolen the march last season leaving Tottenham Hotspur with nothing a few months ago. However, this season has panned out quite differently for both teams. While Spurs have picked up from where they had left it last season, Leicester have struggled to replicate their title-winning form.
Both will have different targets when they meet this weekend. While Ranieri’s men have won all their three Champions League encounters this season, they have been unsuccessful in winning matches consistently in the Premier League collecting just 11 points from nine games.
After a good start to the season, Spurs have slowed down a bit having been winless in four games in all competitions. They are currently in the 5th position with 19 points from 9 games.
The game is expected to be quite competitive despite Leicester’s recent struggles.
Danny Rose v Riyad Mahrez
Riyad Mahrez has been absolutely phenomenal for the Foxes since appearing in the first team. He has been a precious asset for Ranieri and it has become difficult for the manager to give ample rest to his winger. He has 1 goal and 1 assist in the Premier league and 3 goals in their Champions league campaign this season. He has shown just how important he is for the attack to tick.
Given that Leicester didn’t have to play in the midweek EFL Cup unlike Tottenham, Ranieri will have a strong squad against the Spurs which will include Mahrez.
Spurs will be hopeful that Danny Rose will stop the Algerian winger and he will have a pretty tough job at hand. His athletic build helps him go into swift tackles and also dribble and make the forward forays when needed. He has already bagged 1 goal in 5 appearances this season.
Christian Eriksen v Danny Drinkwater
One of the most significant battles that will hugely impact the end result of the game. Eriksen has the task of unlocking opponent’s defence and he has been doing it brilliantly. The attacking Dane already had 3 assists this season. His free have been lethal and his long shots almost always forces goalkeepers into uncomfortable situations. This midfielder is a key player to Spurs’ title winning ambitions.
For Leicester, amidst many disappointments and departures, the only who has been consistent throughout is their anchor Drinkwater. The Englishman have turned out to be Ranieri’s most assured player on the pitch and will be responsible for stopping Eriksen from pulling the strings.
Jamie Vardy v Jan Vertonghen
Jamie Vardy seems to have started to lose his place to Slimani who has already bagged 2 goals in 5 appearances and looks sharper than the Englishman. But when it comes to big games like this, Ranieri will put forward his giant killer back to his position.
He had been devastating last season scoring some of the most brilliant goals for his team. With Mahrez back on his side, Ranieri will be expecting his former self when they meet Tottenham.
In Jan Vertonghen, Spurs have one of the intelligent defenders, who could not only defend but provide quick defence into attack with witty long balls. He has a percentage of 0.6 fouls per game and 1.4 interceptions per game. He will be a key block in Vardy’s way. Spurs’ solid defence will be tested and Vertonghen will need to step up,
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