Tottenham vs Aston Villa Prediction
Monday 1st January 2023
Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
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Tottenham vs Aston Villa Prediction Match Overview
Both teams have stars returning from extended time off after the World Cup (Lloris and Romero for Tottenham and Martinez for Villa). Tottenham are fourth in the table, and Villa are twelfth. Tottenham’s first match after the World Cup hiatus was on Boxing Day at Brentford. They seemed doomed to a defeat after Vitaly Janelt and Ivan Toney scored early in each half. However, Harry Kane and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg scored two goals within six minutes to rescue a point. Tottenham’s form has been mediocre, with only seven points from their last 18. Their games have been full of goals, and they have scored 11 and conceded 13 in this period. Indeed, they lie 13th in the form table over the last six. Their record at home is much better, having won six of their eight games so far at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. The only blips were narrow 2-1 defeats to a talented Liverpool and a high-flying Newcastle. After their draw on Monday, they will be looking to get back on track and claim all three points here.
Villa’s return to the Premier League against Liverpool at home did not go well. Mohamed Salah scored a beautifully incisive goal in the sixth minute, and then Virgil Van Dijk added to Liverpool’s lead. Indeed, Villa have only gone ahead six times this season, a league-low. Ollie Watkins pulled one back in the second half, and Villa applied some pressure. However, a late Stefan Bajcetic finish sealed the points for the Merseyside club. Villa’s form is bipolar, winning three and losing three in their last six. They are, therefore, tenth in the form table. Their away form in the previous six makes for worse reading, picking up only 5 points, though they did beat Brighton in their most recent away game. Indeed, there have been promising signs under new coach Unai Emery.
Tottenham vs Aston Villa Team News
Injuries and Suspensions
Might Not Play: Spence, Bentancur (Tottenham)
Will Not Play: Lucas Moura, Richarlison (Tottenham); Diego Carlos, Ramsey (Aston Villa)
Tottenham (3-4-3): Hugo Lloris; Ben Davies, Eric Dier, Cristian Romero; Ivan Perisic, Rodrigo Bentancur, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Matt Doherty; Son Heung-Min, Harry Kane, Dejan Kulusevski
Aston Villa (4-3-3): Emi Martinez; Lucas Digne, Tyrone Mings, Ezri Konsa, Matty Cash; Douglas Luiz, Boubacar Kamara, John McGinn; Emi Buendia, Ollie Watkins, Leon Bailey
Tottenham vs Aston Villa Prediction Analysis
The contest for the midfield should be intriguing in this game. Tottenham will likely line up with a back three in a 3-4-3 formation, with the industrious and technical Bentancur and Hojbjerg in midfield. Villa should play a 4-3-3 / 4-4-2 style, with Kamara and Luiz holding. At the same time, McGinn has a license to get forward and drift to the side as Buendia moves higher to support Watkins. Tottenham are good at pressing in that midfield area as Bentancur and Hojbjerg never stop moving and, when they win the ball, can play short passes. Bentancur, in particular, is a classy and creative midfielder. As the home team, Tottenham’s midfielders will also receive the ball from the three centre-backs to try to control the play.
The Villa midfielders must be strong and resist pressure and tackles in the midfield area to quieten the crowd early on. Another wrinkle is Kane’s playmaking ability. The centre-forward often drops deep so that Son and Kulusevski can run beyond, though the Swede also likes to get involved in the build-up sometimes. Regardless, Kane will come into midfield and look to spray passes and control the game. Kamara and Luiz must not allow the Englishman to find spaces between the lines. They must fill those areas and stop Kane from helping to dictate the match through his clever passing and movement.
Tottenham’s Danger on Transitions
Despite Tottenham’s creative players who can control games, their manager Antonio Conte has been criticised this season for apparently playing pragmatic and boring football. There have been claims that his style hinders Tottenham’s attacking players. However, Tottenham are famous for their ability on transitions. Therefore, there might be occasions where they allow Villa to have the ball so that they can counter to devastating effect. Perisic and Doherty are great attacking outlets from wing-back, especially the former. Indeed, the Croatian’s work rate and crossing are excellent weapons for Tottenham when he starts. His power and ability to drive up the line will be integral when Tottenham win the ball in midfield and can launch their transitions.
Kane’s aforementioned incisive passing could also be vital in releasing quick wingers Son and Kulusevski. The three front players score most of the goals for Tottenham, and Son’s pace and trickery are significant threats that Cash will have to be wary of. Equally, Kulusevski’s ability to cut inside on the right will threaten Digne. The Villa players must not lose the ball as often as they did against Liverpool, or they could be in serious trouble. If Tottenham do get chances, their forwards are generally clinical. However, returning Villa goalkeeper and World Cup hero Martinez is a quality shot-stopper and cross-claimer. His comeback boosts their chances defensively behind Mings and Konsa. With Richarlison and Moura out, Tottenham lack bench options, but wing-back Sessegnon could be one.
Villa’s Threat Going Forward
Not to be outdone, Villa carry a threat of their own. They, too, enjoy playing on the counter-attack and will look to win the ball high on the occasions when Tottenham are building possession. Indeed, this could be quite a back-and-forth game if Tottenham fail to put passes together. Digne and Cash are flying full-backs who are dangerous when delivering crosses and good at making their way into the box through interplay with their wingers. Indeed, the tricky wide men Buendia and Bailey will sometimes use the full-backs as a decoy so they can come inside and shoot or create.
Digne and Cash might not be as adventurous as in certain other matches. The reason is that they might be pinned back by Tottenham’s quality on the flanks (where most of Tottenham’s attacking play emanates). However, they will still be expected to contribute when they can, and they must try to drive forward when Villa win the ball. McGinn’s runs from deeper positions and his crossing from wider positions will also be crucial. Watkins is diligent in his work rate and will drift to the left sometimes and interchange with Buendia. He is at his best attacking the space. Watkins is arguably not a natural finisher, but chances are likely to be at a premium, so he must take any that come his way. If things are not going well, Villa can introduce Coutinho and Ings in the second half. The former offers possible magic moments. The latter is a more ruthless finisher than Watkins, though he provides less in general play.
Beat the Bookmaker Tottenham vs Aston Villa Prediction
This game is a challenging one to predict. Emery has shown some positive signs in terms of coaching since taking over at Villa, and they have some quality players who can hurt most teams on their day. As stated, though, their away form is awful – they have won one of eight away from Villa Park all season. Regardless, we are almost tempted to pick a draw in this game. Tottenham have great players, but their patterns of play have been stagnant and stifled for a while. Indeed, on several occasions, only the sheer quality of their attackers has rescued them. This game should be a well-contested one between two tactically-adept coaches and talented sets of players. As said, a draw would be unsurprising to us. However, given Tottenham’s home advantage and Villa’s poor away form (allowing for Emery’s appointment mid-season and the World Cup break), we are picking Tottenham to edge it.
Tottenham 2-1 Aston Villa
Beat the Bookmaker Tottenham vs Aston Villa Prediction – Both Teams to Score Odds:
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