Tottenham Hotspur vs Crystal Palace
That is the simple but crucial message to Spurs as a new era for the club and indeed for the Premier League begins on Wednesday night.
A clash which us fans will normally look forward to between two attacking-minded sides suddenly has a new tingle of excitement to it.
Just a month short of two years playing away from home, Spurs are ready to return to home comforts as the new White Hart Lane welcomes back its heroes – and my word it looks terrific!
Could the new stadium actually end up saving Spurs’ season?
With just one point from their past five league matches, the timing may be crucial.
Up to 62,062 supporters could be packed into their breathtaking new home and the outpouring of relief – Spurs were scheduled to move to the new White Hart Lane stadium in September but construction was delayed several times – and emotion could have a galvanising effect on Mauricio Pochettino’s squad, which has been under strength for two months and seen the depth of its resources tested to the limit.
It has been tested to such an extent that as the team approaches the latter stages of a gruelling campaign, a clear lead in third place has been all but eaten up by the main challengers around them.
Pochettino himself admits his side is now involved in a ‘mini league’ with four teams vying for the remaining two Champions League spots so the timing of the move may be enough to urge them on towards securing one of those places.
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Despite results on the pitch, March was not the disaster for Spurs many critics suggested.
With Manchester United appointing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on a full-time basis, and Zinedine Zidane returning to the Real Madrid hotseat, Pochettino’s future at the North London club seems more secure and less likely to approaches from coveted suitors this summer.
A number of his players are also returning from injury and their display in a narrow 2-1 defeat to Liverpool was much improved, only for an inexplicable Hugo Lloris error to cost them a point.
Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace have had a fine season under his stewardship and would love to spoil the party with three points which would all but seal top-flight survival for another season.
They remain a tough side to beat on their day and, in Wilfried Zaha and Aaron Wan-Bissaka,have two men in demand who they will need to keep to continue their progress over the past 18 months.
Zaha claimed two assists during the 2-0 win over Huddersfield at the weekend, while defender helped the Eagles keep their 10th clean sheet in the Premier League.
Crystal Palace’s FA Cup battle against Tottenham Hotspur ended in a victory
The duo’s performances have led to them being linked with moves away from Selhurst Park this summer.
Wan-Bissaka has been linked with a host of clubs, such as Manchester City, while Zaha has been touted with a shock return to United.
This will be another chance to show their worth on what will be a night which should provide some of the Premier League 2019 highlights and will be an evening to remember for Spurs– particularly if the result goes their way.
Tottenham have won 11 of their 19 Premier League meetings against Palace, drawing five times and losing three games.
Spurs have won their last five League meetings 1-0, including in November when Juan Foyth scored his first league goal for the club.
However, Palace knocked a weakened Spurs out of the FA Cup with a 2-0 win at Selhurst Park in January when Conor Wickham and former Spurs man Andros Townsend were on target.
||Tottenham Hotspur vs Crystal Palace
||Asian Handicap Spurs -1.25 @ 2.08
|April 4, 02:45 (GMT+8)
Palace are priced quite attractively to be party poopers.
1X2 @ 6.00 is certainly worth a punt on a side which will also be playing at the new ground for the first time, despite the carnival atmosphere.
You can get Asian Handicap +1.00 Palace @ 2.11 and the Double Chance Palace or Draw @ 2.48.
A repeat of Spurs’ league victory from November – correct score 1-0 – is on offer @ 7.20 and 1X2 Spurs @ 1.50.
Again, the 1X2 draw will appeal to many @ 4.30.
Goals are expected in this encounter, as shown by total goal 0-1 @ 4.20, total goals 2-3 @ 1.99, total goals 4-6 @ 2.91 and over 3.00 goals @ 2.16.
How can I bet against Spurs though, despite their recent poor run.
This is an occasion they have waited for and will savour.
|A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR () BETS ARE WORTH:
| = €20 (Highly confident)
|| = €10 (CONFIDENT)
|| = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)
Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.
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