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Spurs Odyssey Preview - Everton v Spurs, 23.12.18

Last season's game - Everton 0 Spurs 3, 09.09.17
This week - last year
What happened in the Premier League on Matchday 18 2017-18

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

Full Record of Spurs -v- Everton
Prem          Pl   W   D   L   For- Ag  Pts
Home          26  16   7   3   51 - 29  55
Away          26   9  12   5   27 - 21  39
Total(Prem)   52  25  19   8   78 - 50  94
Football Lge
Home(Div 1)   54  25  16  13  107 - 67  72
Away(Div 1)   54  10  17  27   60 - 88  38
Total(Div 1) 108  35  33  40  167 -155 110
Football Lge
Home(Div 2)    1   1   0   0    1 -  0   2
Away(Div 2)    1   0   0   1    2 -  4   0
Total(Div 2)   2   1   0   1    3 -  4   2
Total(Prem)   52  25  19   8   78 - 50  94
Total(Div 1) 108  35  33  40  167 -155 110
Total(Div 2)   2   1   0   1    3 -  4   2
Grand Total  162  61  52  49  248 -209 206

Last Six Premier League results:-

Everton    -    DWLDDL

Chelsea    0-0    Everton
Everton    1-0    Cardiff
Liverpool  1-0    Everton
Everton    1-1    Newcastle
Everton    2-2    Watford
Man City   3-1    Everton

Spurs      -    WWLWWW
C. Palace  0-1    Spurs
Spurs      3-1    Chelsea
Arsenal    4-2    Spurs
Spurs      3-1    S'hampton
Leicester  0-2    Spurs
Spurs      1-0    Burnley

Pos           P  W  D  L   F-A   GD  Pts
3. Spurs     17 13  0  4  31-16  15   39
8. Everton   17  6  6  5  24-22   2   24

We'd all prefer a soft centre at Christmas, wouldn't we?

Who in their right mind likes toffees at Christmas? Surely, given the choice when we dip into those chocolate selection boxes, we all prefer soft centres, don't we? I don't think we are going to find these particular "Toffees" in a soft or generous state of mind, although they have not managed a clean sheet in their last four games despite Davinson Sanchez's Colombian International team mate Yerry Mina having a late start to the season following injury.

Everton did keep three clean sheets in Mina's second, and third games against Chelsea and Cardiff, but they let in two goals at home to Watford nearly two weeks ago, and three away to Man City last week.

Marco Silva was brought in to improve Everton's position over last year, and to challenge for a place in Europe. They have 24 points from their first 17 games and sit in 8th place going into the weekend. At the same time last year they were ninth with 22 points, so there has been improvement, but only marginal. Silva's Everton certainly invested in the summer with Watford's Richarlison signed for a fee of 35 million, rising to 50 million. Mina was signed for 27 million from Barcelona, and left back Lucas Digne for 18 million also from Barcelona. Digne was in the French stand-by squad for this year's World Cup, and he scored Everton's last gasp equaliser in the 2-2 home draw against Watford.

Departures included Wayne Rooney, Funes Mori and Kevin Mirallas, and with loan signings Kurt Zouma from Chelsea and Andre Gomes (another Barcelona connection), both of whom have had plenty of game time, there should be progress to report. Silva generally wears a worried look though on the touchline, and perhaps the "Toffees" need more goal power. Richarlison tops their Premier League scorechart with 8, and former Spur Gylfi Sigurdsson has 6 league goals to his name. "Siggy" missed a penalty in that Watford game.

Everton have lost only once at home this season, and that perhaps surprisingly was to West Ham, whose win signalled a resurgence in their fortunes. According to my calculations, we are the first team that Everton will play at home who are in a higher position, and with home games yet to come against Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and later in the season Manchester United, I'd be a bit concerned about chances of progress if I was a home fan. Those home fans are some of the most ardent and partisan in the league, and they do make any game at Goodison Park a tricky one.

This game is being played the closest to Christmas since our 4-1 home win on 28th December, 1998 when Les Ferdinand scored our first goal and Chris Armstrong had perhaps his finest hour in a Spurs shirt scoring a hat-trick. The Everton side that day included Slaven Bilic, latterly West Ham's manager, but currently managing in Saudi Arabia. They also included one of spurs' "famous five" - Nick Barmby - who went to Everton from Spurs via Middlesbrough and would later play for Liverpool, Leeds, Nottingham Forest (loan) and finally Hull.

Of our fellow ever-present Premier League teams, Everton have to be our favourite opponents. We average over 1.8 points per game against "The Toffees", and we have only lost 8 of our 52 Premier League games against the team from Goodison Park. Last season, we beat them 7-0 on aggregate, which is the highest aggregate score in a Premier League season in meetings between the two teams.

It took 10 attempts for Everton to beat us in the Premier League. That game was in April 1997 when Gary Speed scored the only goal of the game. Another defeat on Merseyside later that year (4-0 at Anfield) was manager Gerry Francis's last game in charge of Spurs. Everton had managed a previous win in the Premier League era, but that is a game we prefer to forget - an FA Cup semi-final at Elland Road in 1995.

Harry Kane made hay at home and away against Everton last season, scoring two in both games. Christian Eriksen also scored in each game. At Goodison Park last September, we equalled our previous two best wins at the Everton ground with a 3-0 win. It wasn't Ronald Koeman's last game in charge, but Everton only managed one more league win before he left in late October, with the club too close to the bottom of the table. Sam Allardyce did the job he was asked to do, but was replaced by the man Everton's executive coveted last season when he was at Watford - Marco Silva.

The only injury doubt for Everton is midfielder Gueye who has a groin strain. There is good news for Spurs with Davinson Sanchez available for selection again after missing nine games in all competitions since picking up a hamstring problem in the Champions League win against PSV in November. Juan Foyth is also available, but Dier, Aurier, Dembele and Wanyama are not ready yet.

Spurs have had three days clear since the morale boosting Carabao Cup win at Arsenal, so perhaps rotation is not so key to this game, as it will be for Boxing Day. Harry Kane will obviously start this game, but I won't guess at who will be in and out against Everton. My fancy is that the Spurs side will not change much with perhaps Ben Davies shifting across to the left back berth, and Sanchez partnering Toby Alderweireld.

I am feeling optimistic about this game, and have predicted a 3-1 away win, which would make it a very merry Christmas for us all!

Match referee Paul Tierney has been in the middle for 11 Premier League games this season, more than his usual allocation. This will be his first such game in charge of Spurs. His only other Spurs game was the VAR-ridden Rochdale FA Cup replay in February, where confusion reigned, which was probably more the fault of the system than this specific official. Mr. Tierney was recently in charge of Everton's 1-0 win over Cardiff

"It was Twenty Years ago today!" - 20 years ago on December 19th we lost a Premier League game at Stamford Bridge. The score was 2-0.

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