Newcastle vs Spurs: Five Key Questions Ahead Of Kick-Off

Will Tottenham Hotspur begin the new season with a victory or will Premier League 'new boys' Newcastle United haunt Pochettino's men once more?

Newcastle vs Spurs: Five Key Questions Ahead Of Kick-Off

The time is almost upon us.

In just over 48 hours, the start of the 2017/18 Premier League season gets underway, when Arsenal host Leicester at the Emirates on Friday night.

And whilst one half of North London opens up their account at home, it comes as no surprise that the other half begins with a rather tricky fixture on the road this Sunday.

Tottenham Hotspur, who have become rather accustomed to playing the opening game of a new season away from home, will start their Premier League campaign off at newly-promoted (again) Newcastle United.

Mauricio Pochettino's side will be looking at this fixture with retribution on their minds, following the humiliating 5-1 defeat at St James' Park, on the last day of the 2015/16 season, which gifted second place in the league to Tottenham's North London rivals Arsenal.

Whilst Spurs will be keen to banish the ghost of that fateful afternoon in May, their recent record against Newcastle – three defeats in five games – shows that history is not on Tottenham’s side.

Ahead of Sunday's match, I take a look at five key Spurs questions which need to be addressed in the build up to kick-off.

1) Who will start at right-back?

With the sale of Kyle Walker and injury to Kieran Trippier against Juventus last Saturday, Mauricio Pochettino faces somewhat of a crisis on the right flank of his defence. Young starlet Kyle Walker Peters is one option for the Spurs boss, but he appears reluctant to throw one of his young players into the deep end out of necessity. Eric Dier and Moussa Sissoko are also thought to be options, though the latter would have to be used in more of a 3-4-3 formation, something which Spurs used frequently last season.

Eric Dier of Spurs

2) Will Heung-Min Son be risked from the start?

The South Korean star played a pivotal role in Tottenham's title challenge last season, and despite injury picked up on international duty last month, the 25-year-old is in contention to be fit to start on Sunday. However, with the player appearing not to be 100% fit it may be best for him to have another week's rest, rather than run the risk of any further damage.

3) Can Harry Kane grab a goal in August?

The Spurs striker has finished as the Premier League’s top goalscorer in each of the past two seasons, but he is a notoriously a slow starter having never scored a Premier League goal in August in his career. The staggering stat is hard to ignore, and with Spurs needing a fast start to launch a more serious Premier League title charge this time around, North London's golden boy will need a fast start too.

Harry Kane of Spurs

4) Will Spurs play the fixture or the occasion?

Despite Mauricio Pochettino's men looking the real deal in the last two seasons, there have been times where his side look to have been distracted by the occasion of certain fixtures. There is no doubt Spurs have come a long way mentally and are now considered one of the most resilient teams in the league, but Tottenham will need to focus on the task at hand on Sunday, and not get carried away with the electric atmosphere on Tyneside. The fixture must be played, not the occasion!

5) Score Prediction?

I don't think we will see the repeat of May 2016, but this certainly won't be a walk in the park for Spurs either. I do see them collecting all three points in a real tough encounter but there will certainly be some shaky patches during the ninety minutes.

Score: 2-1 to Spurs with Dele Alli to grab a brace

Have a look at the Premier League odds and remember that when you sign up at bet365 today for the very first time, you get up to £200 in welcome bonuses. SIGN UP 

Participate also in our ASN Competition and win £100 in FREE BETS


News correlate