Tottenham vs. Burnley
Venue: Tottenham Stadium
Kick off: 4PM
Tottenham Hotspur and Burnley will be looking to recover from poor results during the week when the two sides meet in the Premier League this afternoon.
Jose Mourinho suffered his first defeat as Spurs boss at former club Manchester United on Wednesday, while Burnley were comfortably beaten by Manchester City the day before.
Following three impressive victories under Mourinho, Spurs were brought back down to earth in quite typical fashion at Old Trafford.
The injection of the Portuguese has no doubt lifted spirits following a gloomy period under Mauricio Pochettino since the Champions League final, as was seen with the free-flowing nature of how Spurs attacked against West Ham, Olympiacos and then Bournemouth.
However, when faced with a relatively equal opponent on a big stage – an occasion requiring more tactical nuance – Spurs seemed to lack ideas going forward and looked overwhelmed by United at points.
Despite Dele Alli, a player Mourinho strongly believes in, scoring a wondrous goal, there was a discernible lack of identity and direction about how Spurs attacked on Wednesday, which was a criticism levelled at Mourinho during his time in Manchester.
However, it remains very early days in the Mourinho era, and at this stage, the 56-year-old will be less concerned by results and more interested in cementing a particular way of attacking and defending as a unit – his key philosophy – when Spurs meet Burnley on Saturday.
While Spurs are undergoing significant changes this season, Burnley seem to be staying remarkably true to type under manager Sean Dyche.
Now in their fourth season back in the top flight, the Clarets finds themselves sitting comfortably in 11th place on 18 points, with no punter even considering the possibility of relegation this season.
With very limited resources and an unswervingly consistent set of tactical principles, Dyche has created a foundation at Burnley that essentially guarantees the club a minimum of 40 points over 38 games.
Playing with a classic 4-4-2 system, with one number nine and a second striker just in behind, Burnley press and attack as a unit, squeezing space in the final third and testing the patience of opponents from set pieces.
Against a Spurs side desperate for a victory, Burnley players will know exactly what their plan is heading into this game in North London.
Tottenham Hotspur XI: Gazzaniga, Aurier, Sanchez, Alderweireld, Rose; Sissoko, Winks, Dele, Lo Celso, Son, Kane.
Burnley possible XI: Pope, Bardsley, Tarkowski, Mee, Pieters, Drinkwater, Cork, Lennon, Brady, Barnes, Wood.