Saturday, November 18, 2017

Prediction: Tottenham vs Borussia Dortmund

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 4/7

Bookmaker: Bet365

Pitted in arguably the most difficult group against the likes of Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and APOEL, the Premier League title contenders Tottenham are well aware that a strong start is an absolute must in this year’s edition of the Champions League.

Tottenham

Mauricio Pochettino’s men endured a mixed start to the 2017/18 campaign, winning only two of the initial four Premier League matches. The Spurs warmed up nicely for the Borussia Dortmund clash, however, beating heavily reinforced Everton 3-0 away in what turned out to be an effortless triumph for the north London club. Tottenham now turn their attention to the Champions League as they attempt to register their first win at Wembley this season. The Spurs’ record on their temporary home is nothing to be proud of and the Wednesday’s match will be the perfect opportunity to break the hoodoo. Tottenham need a strong start in the Group of Death if they want to maintain any hope of progressing to the knockout stages, but that will be easier said than done. The last time these two clubs met was in 2015/16 Europa League Round of 16 when German side emerged comfortable 5-1 aggregate winners. Plenty has changed since with Tottenham transforming into the Premier League title contenders, whereas Dortmund seems to have lost the recognizable edge.

Team News

Mousa Dembele and Son Heung-Min are both expected to return to the starting line-up after being rested at weekend.

Spurs will have to do without injured Lamela, Rose, Wanyama and N’Koudou while Dele Alli is suspended for the occasion.

Borussia Dortmund

Borussia Dortmund’s perfect start to the season was interrupted this weekend by a frustrating goalless stalemate at Freiburg. Peter Bosz’s men were the better of two sides having dominated the proceedings with 78% possession and no less than 27 goal attempts, but were unlucky to break the deadlock for full 90 minutes. Without a defeat after three matches, however, Dortmund are leading the pack in the Bundesliga and are keen to make a similarly strong start at the international stage. The Germans have become a noticeable presence in Europe’s elite club competition over the past couple of seasons and will be keen to make another strong introduction as they prepare for a trip to Wembley. The Germans are coming from an active summer in the transfer market and will once again have a fully competitive side despite the fact they have sold one of their key players Ousmane Dembele to Barcelona. The likes of Andrey Yarmolenko, Maximilian Philipp, Mahmoud Dahoud, Omer Torpak, Jeremy Toljan and Manchester City teenage sensation Jadon Sancho are all expected to add an extra quality to Dortmund’s squad in what is expected to be an exciting season for Peter Bosz and his men.

Team News

The visitors have been hit with a couple of injuries to crucial players such as Andre Schurrle, Marco Reus, Sebastian Rode, Erik Durm and Raphael Guerreiro.

More bad news arrived yesterday when it was confirmed that captain Marcel Schmelzer suffered a partial tear to lateral collateral ankle ligament and that defender Marc Bartra will be unavailable through a leg problem.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Dortmund will miss seven first-team players in Tottenham clash
  • Spurs lost both previous meetings with BVB
  • Pochettino’s men are yet to register a win at Wembley this season
  • Dortmund are unbeaten in all 4 matches in new season
  • BVB last lost away in April at Monaco

Conclusion

Borussia Dortmund are depleted with injuries to several key men but Peter Bosz has plenty of exciting talent at his disposal and should be able to compensate. Dortmund are enjoying a successful start to the season and will be a serious test to Tottenham’s Champions League credentials. The first match in Europe is always the most important and Tottenham are expected to go full force against their rivals. But will it be enough?

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 4/7

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Milos Markovic


Formerly a Chief Editor at the largest sports site in Serbia Sportske.net, Milos Markovic is an avid football writer who contributes to a variety of online football magazines - most prominently Soccernews.com and Futbolgrad.com. His feature articles, editorials, interviews and match analyses have provided informed opinion and views, helping the football aficionados keep up to date on relevant events in world football.

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