English Premier League. Week 15
December 11, 15:15 CET
Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester, England
Referee: Robert Madley
Both Manchester United and Tottenham are not experiencing in their best form. Occupying the fifth and sixth positions in the English Premier League these teams do not seem to show any potential for entering the top-4 yet. Six points are separating them, with Jose Mourinho’s team being behind. Winning will equalize Tottenham with Manchester City and make them share the fourth place. O the other hand, if MU win they will significantly shrink the gap between them and the Spurs. A draw will not change anything in the League table, and taking into account the team’s performance trends this is one of the most likely outcomes…
Manchester United has been gaining form recently with Henrikh Mkhitaryan finding his place in the main squad. They have won their last game in Europa League (against Zorya (0-2)) making their place in the Round of 32. However, the fact that only one game was won in the last five EPL games cannot be unseen. Four games in the last five have been draws with opponents were expected to be defeated by Mourinho’s side. Moreover, last four Premier League clashes at Old Trafford have also been draws.
Tottenham, on the other hand, do not show ny better results. They have been left out the Champions League even before the last round of the group stage and show no significant results in the premier League as well. Pochettino’s side have drawn Arsenal (1-1), Leicester (1-1) and have lost the Chelsea clash (2-1) all in the last five games of the Premier League. Important to note, though, that the London team are undefeated in 13 of their last 14 games in the Premier League.
These teams have a lot to prove to their fans right now, and taking into account the fact that these teams feature similar forms, we might expect a real clash at the field.
Another set of equal statistics can be observed in the head-to-head statistics of the recent years, as Tottenham and Manchester United each have two victories, two losses and two draws in the last six face-to-face clashes. The last one, played on April of the current year ended with Pochettino side’s impressive win at home (3-0), followed by the first leg loss at Old Trafford (1-0). However, one might note that neither Tottenham nor Manchester United are not the teams they used to be in the last season. There have been serious updates in the Red Devil’s squad and the week 15 clash is expected to be an equal one.
Jose Mourinho has almost the full squad for the harsh month of December, with defenders Chris Smalling and Luke Shaw expected to recover in the following days. Both will most probably be sidelined for the Tottenham clash as they are reported yet unfit.
As regards the losses of Pochettino’s side, Erik Lamella and Vincent Janssen are injured and will not be able to feature in the clash. Ben Davies, however, is back from the injury and will be available for the manager’s consideration.
Manchester United (4-2-3-1) vs Tottenham (4-2-3-1)