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Prediction: Tottenham vs Bayer Leverkusen


Verdict: Both teams to score

Best Odds: 7/10

Bookmaker: bet365

With a five-match winless run behind them and North London derby against Arsenal in front of them, Spurs are in desperate need of a morale-boosting win at the moment. Tottenham are one point clear of third-placed Bayer Leverkusen in the Group E standings, meaning die Werkself will also want to win at White Hart Lane.

Tottenham

Bar a couple of minor setbacks, Tottenham Hotspur had been pretty impressive in the opening exchanges despite the fact that star striker Harry Kane missed a number of important fixtures through injury. However, the busy schedule appears to be slowly getting to Spurs, as their five-match winning run achieved at the end of September now looks like a distant past. Tottenham have since failed to win any of their next five fixtures, recording four draws and losing to Liverpool in the EFL Cup, meaning they desperately need to try and win at least one of the remaining two matches before the next international break. And even though Spurs face arch rivals Arsenal on Sunday, they cannot afford not to fully focus on the Bayer Leverkusen match as the potential victory over the German side would see them seriously improve their chances of reaching the Champions League knockout stage. Tottenham suffered a costly defeat to Monaco at White Hart Lane in their opening group fixture, but Spurs then showed considerable improvement to defeat CSKA Moscow on the road before playing out a goalless draw at Bay Arena. If they manage to defeat Bayer Leverkusen in the return match, the White Hart Lane outfit will be on the verge of reaching the last 16 stage.

Team News

Harry Kane is nearing a return to full fitness, but it remains to be seen whether he will be risked against Bayer Leverkusen with Arsenal game next.

Toby Alderweireld has failed to recover in time, meaning that Eric Dier will continue in defence, while Moussa Sissoko is likely to start as he is banned for the North London derby.

Bayer Leverkusen

Bayer Leverkusen have been regular in Champions League group stages over the last decade or so, but they haven’t quite managed to realise their full potential. While keeping hold of all key men, die Werkself managed to reinforce the squad over the summer with the likes of Volland, Baumgartlinger and Dragovic, but their performance did not exactly improve. Bayer currently occupy 10th position in the Bundesliga standings, and they are currently five points behind CL positions, while their European campaign has not been a success either. Die Werkself did prove quite difficult to beat, sharing spoils with CSKA Moscow, Monaco and Tottenham Hotspur, but they are highly unlikely to make it to the next stage unless they can win at least one fixture. The good news is that Leverkusen finally managed to end a barren run of results as they defeated Wolfsburg on the road, so they will be looking to build on that result when they face Tottenham at White Hart Lane. The problem is that Leverkusen are winless in last seven Champions League fixtures on the road (D3 L4), but at least they managed to score in last four of those.

Team News

The likes of Kevin Volland and Hakan Calhanoglu should be recalled to the side, while former Man Utd striker Javier Hernandez will keep his place up front.

Meanwhile, Omer Toprak, Karim Bellarabi, Jonathan Tah, Joel Pohjanpalo and Vladimir Yurchenko remain in the treatment room.

Key Factors to Consider

  • One goal was scored in teams’ only two meetings
  • Tottenham won on their only previous visit to Bay Arena (Europa League)
  • Both teams scored in three of Spurs’ last five fixtures
  • Leverkusen scored in last 12 away fixtures
  • Die Werkself also scored on last four Champions League travels

Conclusion

This is an opportunity for both Tottenham and Bayer Leverkusen to return to the right track and at the same time edge closer to the next stage. Taking also into account Leverkusen’s impressive goalscoring run on the road, we are tempted to back both teams to score.

Verdict: Both teams to score

Best Odds: 7/10

Bookmaker: bet365

Tue 1 Nov, 2016
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