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Spurs Odyssey Preview - Spurs v Man Utd, 31.01.18

Last season's game - Spurs 2 Man Utd 1 - 14.05.17
This season's away game - Man Utd 1 Spurs 0 - 28.10.17
This week - last year
What happened in the Premier League on Matchday 25 2016-17

See the current injury list for all Premier League Teams
All the Spurs Stats you could hope for here! THFC6061 Sports Stats

Full League Record of Man Utd v Spurs

Prem          Pl   W   D   L   For-Ag  Pts
Home          25   5   8  12   30 -39  23
Away          26   2   3  21   13 -51   9
Total (Prem)  51   7  11  33   43 -90  32
Football Lge
Home (Div 1)  51  20  19  12   89 -64  63
Away (Div 1)  51   9   9  33   55 -101 28
Total(Div 1) 102  29  28  45  144 -165 91
Football Lge
Home (Div 2)   4   2   1   1   10 - 3   5
Away (Div 2)   4   1   2   1    3 - 3   4
Total(Div 2)   8   3   3   2   13 - 6   9
Total (Prem)  51   7  11  33   43 -90  32
Total (Div 1) 102 29  28  45  144 -165 91
Total (Div 2)  8   3   3   2   13 - 6   9
Grand Total   161 39  42  80  200 -261 129

Last Six Premier League results:-

Spurs      -    WWWDWD
Burnley    0-3    Spurs
Spurs      5-2    S'hampton
Swansea    0-2    Spurs
Spurs      1-1    West Ham
Spurs      4-0    Everton
S'hampton  1-1    Spurs

Man Utd    -    DDDWWW

Leicester  2-2    Man Utd  
Man Utd    2-2    Burnley
Man Utd    0-0    S'hampton
Everton    0-2    Man Utd
Man Utd    3-0    Stoke
Burnley    0-1    Man Utd

Pos           P  W  D  L   F-A   GD  Pts
2. Man Utd   24 16  5  3  49-16  33   53
5. Spurs     24 13  6  5  47-22  25   45

Invoke the spirit of "The Finale"

Any match between Spurs and Manchester United conjures up nostalgia about memorable, entertaining games; end to end football, and great excitement. I don't know when the fixture gained this reputation, but perhaps it stems from the 65-66 season when each team won its home game 5-1. Spurs won first in October 1965, when we had five different scorers (Gilzean, Johnson, Greaves, Clayton, Robertson) whilst United extracted full revenge at Old Trafford just before Christmas 1965. Bobby Charlton, Denis Law (2), Phil Beal (o.g) and David Herd were the United scorers.

Neil Johnson is perhaps the least well known name of the two teams who met that October. Born on 3rd December 1946 that home game against United was just his third game in the Spurs' first team, and the goal was his first senior goal. Johnson played on the right wing and gave United left back Tony Dunne something of a roasting. Apart from scoring Johnson had a hand in two more of our goals. Johnson stayed with Spurs until 1971, but never reached the same heights as in that United game, playing 31 games (+ 7 as sub) and scoring 6 goals. After a brief loan at Charlton and a move to Torquay, Johnson's playing days ended in non-league football with Dover and Tonbridge. He had a good run in the Spurs team in the spring of 1969, scoring 3 goals including a winner against Chelsea.

Despite all the relish that surrounds these games, the fact is that our Premier League record against United is worse even than that against Chelsea. In the course of 161 Football League meetings with United we have amassed less points than we have in 137 games against Chelsea. These teams - and our other top six rivals - are exactly the ones against whom we need to improve our winning record. In our next three league games (Liverpool and Arsenal follow) we will be sorely tested.

We've only won five of our 25 home games in the Premier League against United, and arguably one of those (May 2001 when United had already secured the title) was not in anger. Of course we all remember last year's "finale" when we did win 2-1, with Harry Kane (who else) scoring the last goal by a Spurs player in the old White Hart Lane Stadium. It was not to be the last goal though, as Wayne Rooney scored United's only goal, and indeed his last goal for "The Red Devils" before his return to Everton.

Jose Mourinho's men had squeezed past Celta Vigo in a tough Europa League semi-final, and winning The Europa League Final became the only way into the Champions League for United, which of course is what they did.

The big transfer news this window has been the move of Alexis Sanchez going to Old Trafford from Arsenal. Why, even Sheik Mansour's money-laden Manchester City turned down the chance of signing Sanchez, and it seems his terms were even too steep for them. Not so for Mourinho, who has done such a great job over the years of spending so much of other people's money, notably that of Abramovich and now United. Sanchez scored against us for Arsenal in November and could become only the third player to score against us for different teams in the same season. The others were Cantona in 1992/3 and Benito Carbone in 99/00 for Sheffield Wednesday and Aston Villa.

The arrival of Sanchez is not a reason for Spurs to be afraid. After all, we have beaten Arsenal before when Sanchez was in their team. Last April was an example. Sanchez does, of course, add power to an already threatenimng team who, after all, are the closest to their cross-town rivals Man City. It was interesting that Sanchez was given game time in the FA Cup against lowly Yeovil on Friday (72 minutes). This was apparently because he had not had so many minutes during January while the transfer saga was playing out.

Whilst the six (league) game form of United is marginally worse than ours (they have drawn one more game), they have not conceded a goal for six games now. That includes their two FA Cup wins over Derby County and Yeovil. Martial, Lingard and Lukaku have all been in the goals recently. With Sanchez added to the mix this first game of the next three against top six sides will be as tough as they come. Mourinho has little to worry about as far as injuries are concerned. Apart from the (likely to be ) departing Ibrahimovic, Bailly and Blind are the only absences for United.

Spurs' injury situation remains something of a mystery. Serge Aurier will be missing due to an ankle injury sustained last week at Southampton. That's a shame as I think his pace woud be desirable. Still, Kieran Trippier should be fresh as he has had relatively little game time over the last six weeks. Harry Winks is also absent. The club announced yesterday (Monday) that Hugo Lloris, Danny Rose, Erik Lamela, Toby Alderweireld and Christian Eriksen all joined in the first team recovery session, and today (Tuesday) they confirmed that all returned to first team training. What that means in terms of match fitness for tomorrow remains to be seen. We have to wait and see. We certainly need some pace in the side, and hopefully our first choice front four of Eriksen, Dele, Son and Kane. The return of Toby Alderweireld will be a great blessing when he does come back, but the very latest news is that it will not be tomorrow!

It could be a record-breaking Premier league crowd tomorrow, and we will surely have a great atmosphere. The crowd need to invoke the spirit of "The Finale" and urge their team onto a much-needed win. I am feeling positive and have gone for another 2-1 to Spurs! It would be a great occasion for Harry Kane to score his 100th Premier League goal!

Match referee Andre Marriner took charge of our first game of the season at Newcastle (won 3-0) and our home game against Liverpool (won 4-1). I am hopimg for his "winning run" to continue tomorrow!

"It was Twenty Years ago today!" - reviewing the 97/98 season match by match. It wasn't a good one!

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