Tottenham will return to Premier League action this Monday on Boxing Day, when they take on London side Brentford at the Brentford Community Stadium.
Venue: Brentford Community Stadium (London)
Brentford are unbeaten in their last three Premier League games (W1, D2).
They have not kept a clean sheet in their last eight games in all competitions (including friendly games).
Tottenham have not kept a clean sheet in their last eight competitive games.
They have scored 31 league goals this season. Only Manchester City (40) and Arsenal (33) have scored more in the Premier League.
But the 21 goals they have conceded is the most for teams in the current top eight.
No team has recorded more league wins when conceding the opening goal this season than Tottenham (W4, D1, L4), whilst Brentford are one of four clubs yet to win when behind first (D4, L4).
Brentford have won their last five league games in which Ivan Toney has scored before half-time, including their most recent.
Heung-Min Son has scored two of Tottenham’s last three goals against Brentford.
Head to head
In two Premier League meetings between both sides last season, Tottenham won one and drew the other.
Latest performances in all competitions
Brentford will look to get back to Premier League action with a bang when they host Tottenham on Boxing Day.
Thomas Frank’s side entered the World Cup break in high spirits after winning three Premier League games without defeat (W1, D2).
The last result in that series was a morale-boosting 2-1 win over champions Manchester City, with Ivan Toney scoring a brace in the game to seal Brentford’s first win away at Manchester City in 85 years.
The result means they begin this round just six points ahead of the relegation zone. However, they are just three points shy of Liverpool in sixth place and will be happy with their placement regardless after a difficult season.
Another big scalp here to add to both Manchester clubs could see them enter 2023 in the top half of the table. However, their preparations for this game could have been better as they are without a win in three friendly games during the World Cup break.
The travails of their top-scorer Ivan Toney could also be a factor that determines how their season goes from here, given that the striker could face months on the sideline if found guilty of the betting charges levelled against him.
Possible Brentford starting line-up
David Raya: Mads Roerslev Rasmussen, Zanka, Ben Mee, Ethan Pinnock; Rico Henry, Vitaly Janelt, Christian Nørgaard, Mathias Jensen; Bryan Mbeumo, Ivan Toney.
Injured: Kristoffer Ajer, Shandon Baptiste, Aaron Hickey, Thomas Strakosha.
Like Brentford, Tottenham also entered the World Cup break in high spirits after recording a dramatic 4-3 win over Leeds United in the Premier League.
Goals from Harry Kane, Ben Davies and Rodrigo Bentancur gave Antonio Conte’s men the win and kept them rooted inside the top four despite a turbulent mid-October November that saw them lose four of the eight games they played within that period (D1, W3).
They come into his tie sitting in fourth position, just three points behind second-placed Manchester City. And so, they cannot afford a repeat of their scoreless draw away to Brentford in April 2022 that contributed to them almost slipping out of the top four.
To achieve a better result, they will have to rejig their defending after they failed to keep a clean sheet in their last eight games.
However, Spurs have every reason to believe they’ll hit the ground running immediately. They have shown themselves regularly capable of living up to expectations by winning 80% of league games as pre-match favourites this season (W8, D1, L1) – second only to Arsenal in that regard.
Also, all four PL losses this season have been at the hands of clubs in the top six as of Christmas Day, suggesting Spurs should welcome this assignment.
Possible Tottenham starting line-up
Fraser Forster; Eric Dier, Clement Lenglet, Ben Davies; Emerson Royal, Pierre Emil Højbjerg, Oliver Skipp, Ivan Perisic; Dejan Kulusevski, Heung-Min Son, Harry Kane.
Doubtful: Djed Spence, Oliver Skipp
Suspended: Rodrigo Bentancur
Brentford 1-2 Tottenham