Norwich City will look to build upon their impressive win at Manchester United last weekend when they travel to London to face Tottenham at White Hart Lane on Boxing Day (15:00).
The Canaries, who lifted themselves out of the Premier League’s relegation zone with that vital 2-1 victory at Old Trafford last Saturday, will be looking to shock the hosts once more and knock their opponents out of the top-flight’s top four by hitting Spurs on the counter attack with the likes of Nathan Redmond, Robbie Brady and Cameron Jerome at the forefront.
Meanwhile Mauricio Pochettino’s side, who comfortably strolled to a solid 2-0 win against his former club Southampton last time out, cannot afford to drop points against the bottom-half teams if they are to keep their hopes alive of qualifying for next season’s UEFA Champions League.
The last meeting between Spurs and the Canaries was back in February 2013; where Robert Snodgrass scored the only goal of the game, shortly after half-time, to snatch all three points for the lowly hosts at Carrow Road.
However; overall Tottenham are normally pretty resolute at the back against Norwich, having conceded just five goals in their last ten Premier League matches against this afternoon’s opponents.
They also boast two outstanding England internationals who are currently in-form. Striker Harry Kane has netted eight goals in his last eight league matches for Spurs, meanwhile midfielder Dele Alli has scored or assisted four goals in his last four league matches (two goals, two assists).
Fellow midfielder Cristian Eriksen might also fancy his chances of getting onto the scoresheet today having scored in both of his top-flight appearances on Boxing Day (2013 vs West Brom and 2014 vs Leicester City).
Meanwhile there is a huge contrast in fortunes install for Alex Neil’s visitors. Although Norwich have have lost just once in their last five Premier League meetings with Spurs (W2 D2 L1), the Canaries have never won a top-flight fixture on Boxing Day in five attempts.
England midfielder Ryan Mason (Ankle) remains on the sidelines through injury, although manager Pochettino has no other selection worries ahead of the game at White Hart Lane.
Left-back Danny Rose should have recovered in time for the visit of Norwich after suffering illness before Spurs’ clash against Southampton, meanwhile forward Kane has shrugged off a slight knee problem sustained at St Mary’s.
Midfielder Alex Pritchard (Ankle surgery) is the only long-term absentee for Tottenham. Fellow winger Nacer Chadli is pushing for a start.
Norwich’s Matt Jarvis is definitely out of contention for this Boxing Day fixture due to a knee injury, while defender Andre Wisdom is a major doubt and faces a late fitness test after suffering a hamstring problem against Everton a fortnight ago.
However boss Neil is unlikely to make too many changes to the starting eleven that triumphed at Manchester United last weekend.
League Position: Tottenham – 4th (29 pts); Norwich – 16th (17 pts)
Last Meeting: Norwich 1-0 Tottenham – Feb 23, 2014
Key Players: Tottenham – Harry Kane; Norwich – Nathan Redmond
Premier League Form: Tottenham – DWDDLW; Norwich – WLDLDW
Shoot Says: Tottenham 2-0 Norwich