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Spurs Odyssey Preview - Ludogorets v Spurs, 05.11.20

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Spurs' record in Europe:-
The official crest of Tottenham Hotspur
U.E.F.A Champions League
 P  W   D   L   F - A
45 19   9  17  82 - 68

(Finalists 2019)
European Cup
P   W   D   L   F - A
8   4   1   3  21 - 13
(Semi-Finalists 1962)
European Cup Winners Cup
P   W   D   L   F - A
33  20  5   8  65 - 34
(Winners 1963)
UEFA Cup/Europa League
 P    W   D   L   F - A
145  82  36  27  291-126 
(Winners 1972, 1984
 Finalists 1974)
The club logo of Ludogorets
 P   W   D   L   F - A
231 125 51  55  459-241

Europa League Group J

               P  W  D  L   F-A   GD   Pts

 1. Antwerp    2  2  0  0   3-1    2    6 
 2. Spurs      2  1  0  1   3-1    2    3
 3. LASK       2  1  0  1   4-6   -2    3 
 3. Ludogorets 2  0  0  2   4-6   -2    0   

Back to Bulgaria where we've never lost!

Spurs might never have won a competitive game in Belgium, but in Bulgaria they have done nothing but win! Okay, we only played there once before and that was for our first European game of the season against Lokomotiv Plovdiv. We had to rely upon late goals by Harry Kane (penalty) and Tanguy Ndombele to overcome a 71st minute goal by Minchev which threatened to end our European venture at a very early stage.

Plovdiv had just lost 3-1 to Ludogorets before they played us. Ludogorets beat Levski 1-0 on Sunday and are level with Plovdiv at the top of the table with a game in hand. Ludogorets lost their first league game in early August, but the only games they've lost since then have been in European competition. They fell out of the Champions League qualifiers at the second hurdle, beaten 1-0 by Midtjylland who are currently bottom of Liverpool's Champions league group.

The "Eagles" as Ludogorets are known were granted a bye and access to the Europa League via a play-off win against Dynamo Brest of Belarus and have so far lost at home to Royal Antwerp before they were beaten 4-3 Last Thursday by LASK. They were 4-1 down with just over half an hour to go but drew close thanks to two more goals by Elvis Manu (what a name!) thus completing a hat-trick. His hat-trick goal was a penalty.

Elvis Manu is a former Dutch U-21 International now aged 27. He had been playing in China for a couple of years before being signed by the "Eagles" in August. So far, he's made two league starts but he has scored 6 goals in both European and domestic competition. Elvis started his career with Feyenoord in 2010. he played some Championship football with brighton and Huddersfield in 2015 and 2016.

Ludogorets are the reigning champions in Bulgaria, and in fact won the title for a ninth consecutive time. Last season the "Eagles" reached the Europa League Round of 16 but were beaten by Inter, for whom Christian Eriksen scored one of the goals at the Bulgarian's Razgrad Stadium. That was Eriksen's first goal for his new club where he continues to struggle to get many minutes on the pitch.

This is Ludogorets' ninth consecutive season in Europe, matching their league title wins. In 2014 they reached the Champions League Group stage when they played Real Madrid, Basel and Liverpool. They finished bottom of the group (Liverpool were third), but they beat Basel at home , and drew at home to Liverpool. Real Madrid managed a 2-1 win in Bulgaria. Gareth Bale played in both their games and scored in Real Madrid's 4-0 home win. Luka Modric played in the away game. There is a man called Modric running the line in tomorrow night's game. No relation, I assume!

Jose Mourinho has said that Spurs will "go with power" in tomorrow's game. I never thought he would make so many changes as he has for the last two Europa League games, but with most players fit (even Japhet Tanganga has now returned to training) it is difficult to predict the team. Moussa Sissoko has been subject of a Spurs Official quote, and I suspect he will play, perhaps beside Harry Winks. Those not involved against Brighton (Aurier, Sanchez, Winks, Dele, Bergwijn and Vinicius) will hope to be involved, but I'm not sure they will all get a start. Once again, Spurs won't find it easy, but I hope to see a 2-0 win.

Official Site Team News - Reguilon, Aurier, Lamela not involved.

Harry Kane will be hoping for a opportunity to score his 200th club goal. Harry will then join legends Bobby Smith (208) and Jimmy Greaves (266) as the only players to achieve such a landmark for Spurs.

Our on-field match officials are from Croatia, led by referee Fran Jovic (aged 36) who we have not previously encountered. Mr Jovic and his team were recently in charge of Bayer Leverkusen's Matchday 1 6-2 win over Nice.

Patience the key with Bale return

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