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Preview: Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester United – Barclays Premier League 2015/16

White Hart Lane, London

Barclays Premier League 2015/16

Sunday 10th April 2016, KO 16:30 BST live on Sky Sports 1 HD

Referee: Mike Dean;

Assistant Referees: Stuart Burt and Eddie Smart;

Fourth Official: Jonathan Moss

Manchester United face Tottenham Hotspur in the Barclays Premier League at White Hart Lane on Sunday afternoon, a week after their last match against Everton at Old Trafford, which resulted in a 1-0 victory by Louis van Gaal’s side. United may have had a tough season, but there are plenty of positives to look at. Deadwood has been removed from the club, with more to get rid of, but youth is coming through, taking their chances and looking good in the first team, which just goes to show that the Academy was never-failing, despite the criticism from the media, the same media who seem to shout from the rooftops about Manchester City’s Academy, despite no players actually making it into their first team on a consistent basis. Pep Guardiola may just change that, but it is something that the club would need to hope will succeed, rather than watch it succeed, which is the case for United. Not all player forge careers for themselves at Manchester United, but they do forge careers for themselves at other clubs, consistently, which goes to show everything is working.

United are having that much of a poor season, which is something you can read about daily in the media, that they are in fifth place, not a position where United are used to being, but they are in fifth with a great chance of increasing that before the end of the season. United are also in the quarter-final stages of the Emirates FA Cup, and will need to get through West Ham United in order to become a semi-finalist, in which they could face Everton at Wembley, a side they have already beaten twice in the league this season. United are at present four points behind Manchester City, it was a point but they have beaten West Bromwich Albion at a rather empty Etihad Stadium this evening, with United playing Spurs, with a chance to take it back to a point behind City. Arsenal are in third place just six points ahead of United, which could be three points by this time tomorrow night. United may be long out of the title race, but the race for a top four place is well and truly open, and achievable for United, no matter what any of the naysayers suggest.

Injuries have taken their toll on United this season, who have played the majority of the season without Luke Shaw, who has now returned to training, although he may not play again this season. The squad has also missed the experience of Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young, who have both been out for long periods, not to mention the defence, which has seen Phil Jones sit on the sidelines for much of the season, although that is not much of a loss based on current form and the fact he was schooled by a Chelsea U21 side earlier this week, although he did come through that match without injuring himself, so that has to be applauded. Wayne Rooney was a big loss when he was ruled out for a period through injury, after being a player close to form again. But since then, we have seen the rise of Marcus Rashford, meaning Rooney has not been missed that much, although it could have been much better. This is a season where Rooney has declined massively, yet has managed to break the goalscoring record for England and is close to doing the same for Manchester United, which is something that some want to see happen, other don’t. That is something for another time, though. Injuries are coming to an end, although Bastian Schweinsteiger is the only long-term injury, there are other players on the sidelines. United need to get over the injuries and get back to football. Their rivals this season have dropped points; West Ham United 3-3 Arsenal earlier today was a big one, with United having the possibility to end Spurs’ title chase this season with a victory, then onto relegating Aston Villa in a weeks time – see it could be a lot worse for United supporters.

United have played Tottenham Hotspur 23 times at White Hart Lane in the Premier League era, winning 12 matches, drawing eight and losing three times. United have scored 38 goals, conceding 25 and keeping nine clean sheets. This season, United beat Spurs 1-0 at Old Trafford on the first day of the season, even if it was down to a Kyle Walker own goal. United’s record away to Spurs is a good one only losing three matches out of the 23 played. That result needs to continue with United keeping their chase on the top four, which many supporters seem to think is long gone, despite the fact that United are right in it, providing they win on Sunday. United have a lot to play for this season, something to end the season on a high. Their next two matches are important, which then sees them head into some easier matches, which we well know seem to be hard for United, especially this season. Come on UNITED!

Manchester United Statistics (Domestic League):

Based on Barclays Premier League 2015/16 [statistics are taken from the Official Barclays Premier League website]

Played 31 matches, won 15, drawn 8, lost 8 and currently have 53 points

Scored 39 goals (1.26 goals per match) and conceded 27 goals (0.87 goals per match)

Longest unbeaten streak is 7 matches

Clean sheets 48%

Tottenham Hotspur (Domestic League):

Based on Barclays Premier League 2015/16 [statistics are taken from the Official Barclays Premier League website]

Played 32 matches, won 17, drawn 11, lost 4 and currently have 62 points

Scored 51 goals (1.78 goals per match) and conceded 41 goals (0.78 goals per match)

Longest unbeaten streak is 14 matches

Clean sheets 34%

Top Scorers (all competitions):

Manchester United: 14 – Wayne Rooney, 13 – Anthony Martial, 8 – Juan Mata, 7 – Memphis Depay, 6 – Ander Herrera, 5 – Jesse Lingard, Marcus Rashford, 4 – Own Goal, 2 – Daley Blind, Marouane Fellaini, Chris Smalling, 1 – Adnan Januzaj, Andreas Pereira, Morgan Schneiderlin, Bastian Schweinsteiger

Tottenham Hotspur: 25 – Harry Kane, 9 – Erik Lamela, 8 – Christian Eriksen, 7 – Dele Alli, Nacer Chadli, 6 – Son Heung-min, 4 – Mousa Dembélé, Eric Dier, 3 – Toby Alderweireld, Tom Carroll, 2 – Ryan Mason, 1 – Danny Rose, Kieran Trippier, Kyle Walker

Manchester United Form: WWDDLL

Last Six Matches (all competitions): Everton 1-0 W, Manchester City 1-0 W, Liverpool 1-1 D, West Ham United 1-1 D, Liverpool 2-0 L, West Bromwich Albion 1-0 L

Tottenham Hotspur Form: DWLWLD

Last Six Matches (all competitions): Liverpool 1-1 D, Bournemouth 3-0 W, Borussia Dortmund 2-1 L, Aston Villa 2-0 W, Borussia Dortmund 3-0 L, Arsenal 2-2 D

Head to Head:

Played 23 matches at White Hart Lane in the Barclays Premier League:

Manchester United: Won 12, Drawn 8, Lost 3 – Scored 38 goals, conceded 25 goals and kept 9 clean sheets

Tottenham Hotspur: Won 3, Drawn 8, Lost 12 – Scored 25 goals, conceded 38 goals and kept 3 clean sheets

Manchester United Squad:

Manager: Louis van Gaal

Goalkeepers: 1. David De Gea, 20. Sergio Romero, 40. Joel Castro Pereira, 50. Sam Johnstone;

Defenders: 4. Phil Jones, 5. Marcos Rojo, 12. Chris Smalling, 23. Luke Shaw, 30. Guillermo Varela, 33. Paddy McNair, 36. Matteo Darmian, 37. Donald Love, 38. Axel Tuanzebe, 41. Regan Poole, 43. Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, 49. Joe Riley;

Midfielders: 8. Juan Mata, 11. Adnan Januzaj, 16. Michael Carrick, 17. Daley Blind, 18. Ashley Young, 21. Ander Herrera, 25. Antonio Valencia, 27. Marouane Fellaini, 28. Morgan Schneiderlin, 31. Bastian Schweinsteiger, 35. Jesse Lingard, 44. Andreas Pereira, 47. James Weir;

Strikers: 7. Memphis Depay, 9. Anthony Martial, 10. Wayne Rooney, 39. Marcus Rashford, 48. Will Keane

Doubts/Injuries: 3. Luke Shaw (broken leg), 10. Wayne Rooney (knee), 11. Adnan Januzaj (hamstring), 31. Bastian Schweinsteiger (MCL knee ligament), 49. Will Keane (groin) [injury details taken from PhysioRoom.com]

Suspensions: None [suspensions confirmed by the FA.com]

Tottenham Hotspur Squad:

Manager: Mauricio Pochettino

Goalkeepers: 1. Hugo Lloris, 13. Michel Vorm, 31. Luke McGee;

Defenders: 2. Kyle Walker, 3. Danny Rose, 4. Toby Alderweireld, 5. Jan Vertonghen, 16. Kieran Trippier, 27. Kevin Wimmer, 33. Ben Davies;

Midfielders: 6. Nabil Bentaleb, 8. Ryan Mason, 11. Érik Lamela, 15. Eric Dier, 19. Mousa Dembélé, 20. Dele Alli, 22. Nacer Chadli, 23. Christian Eriksen, 25. Joshua Onomah, 28. Tom Carroll, 29. Harry Winks;

Strikers: 7. Son Heung-min, 10. Harry Kane, 14. Clinton N’Jie

Doubts/Injuries: 5. Jan Vertonghen (MCL), 6. Nabil Bentaleb (knee), 11. Érik Lamela (calf), 14. Clinton N’Jie  (knee) [injury details taken from PhysioRoom.com]

Suspensions: None [suspensions confirmed by the FA.com]

Predicted Formation/Starting XI:

Score Prediction:

Tottenham Hotspur 1-2 Manchester United

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