Stoke City vs Spurs: Expect goals as Tottenham chase Champions League dream

12May 2013

England - Premier League

Tottenham's bid for a top-four finish has reached a critical point as they visit Stoke, and Kevin Hatchard suspects both defences will struggle to cope under pressure.

 

Stoke City vs Tottenham Hotspur, Sun 13:30 BST, Live on Sky Sports 1


Match Odds: Stoke 4.6, Spurs 1.94, the draw 3.6

 

After fighting back twice to draw 2-2 at Chelsea on Wednesday, Spurs are still in the mix for Champions League qualification, but this is a game they surely need to win. Anything less than three points would allow Arsenal to gain an insurmountable lead over their North London rivals if they beat Wigan on Tuesday.

 

Tottenham can take heart from their excellent away form - in their last ten Premier League road matches the Lilywhites have racked up five wins, four draws and just one defeat. Spurs are, in my humble opinion, the best counter-attacking team in the country, and as such they score freely on their travels. Andre Villas-Boas' men have scored at least two goals in each of their last five Premier League away games, and Opta tell us they will equal a club record if they net at least a brace at the Britannia Stadium.

 

Tottenham have scored 35 league goals away from home, and only Manchester United (36) have netted more.

Unsurprisingly, Tottenham's star man Gareth Bale has played a key role in his side's stellar away form. The Welsh wizard has scored in 10 of their 18 Premier League away matches - he is 4.6 in the First Goalscorer market and 2.16 in the To Score market.

 

Stoke are still not entirely safe from relegation, but it would take a disastrous combination of results to send them down. A burst of seven points from their last three games has taken them over the finish line, just when it seemed they were in danger. Before we all get too excited about a Potters revival, we should note that those seven points have been collected from teams in the bottom six (Norwich, QPR and Sunderland). Stoke do have a strong recent record against Spurs - they are unbeaten in the clubs' last three clashes, winning once and drawing twice. One Stoke player who particularly enjoys facing Spurs is Matthew Etherington - Opta tell us he has scored three goals in his last three games against his former club. He is 6.2 in the To Score market.

 

The bet that jumps out at me is Over 2.5 Goals at 2.12 - it would have paid out in nine of Spurs' last 11 Premier League games, and it's worth considering that Stoke have kept just three Premier League clean sheets in 2013. Spurs' defence is also fallible (also just three shut-outs in 2013), especially at set-pieces, and this is an area Stoke are well equipped to exploit. Another thing that leads me towards Over 2.5 Goals is that if Stoke score early, Spurs' desperate need to win could see the game become frantically stretched. With both defences vulnerable, backing Yes in the Both Teams to Score market is worth a look at 1.9.

 

With Mousa Dembele and Aaron Lennon back from injury and likely to start, it's tempting to back Spurs to win at 1.94, but I do think it's a slightly skinny price. I think the goal markets are more appealing, as the race for Champions League qualification prepares to take another twist.

 

Recommended Bets

Back Over 2.5 Goals at 2.12

Back Both Teams To Score at 1.9

 

Bet HERE

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Keywords: Stoke City, Spurs, goals, Tottenham, Champions League

Source: Betfair

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