Huddersfield v Tottenham preview: Terriers look to capitalise on Christian Eriksen absence
Last Updated: 30/09/18 7:33am
Huddersfield host Tottenham at the John Smith's Stadium on Saturday afternoon still looking for their first win of the campaign, which would propel them off the foot of the table.
While Spurs were being taken to penalties by Watford at Stadium MK on Wednesday, the Terriers have had a full week to prepare after being knocked out of the Carabao Cup by Stoke in the previous round.
Huddersfield boss David Wagner watched his side comfortably beaten 4-0 at home by Tottenham last season, and the German can expect another difficult afternoon in West Yorkshire.
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Mauricio Pochettino's men can move into the top four if they better Watford's result at Arsenal, and Huddersfield will have to cut out the basic mistakes which led to their 3-1 defeat last time out against Leicester.
But the Argentine will be without his playmaker Christian Eriksen for the trip up north, although he hopes his injury is not too serious.
The Denmark international picked up an abdomen injury at Brighton last weekend, but Pochettino is confident he will be fit to face Barcelona in the Champions League on Wednesday.
"After the game against Brighton he started to feel a small problem in his abdominal," he said.
"I think it's a small thing. I hope for next week he will be available again. For Barcelona? I hope yes."
Ramadan Sobhi remains sidelined with a knee injury for Huddersfield. Wagner has also confirmed that Danny Williams has swelling on his knee and will return to the group during next month's international break.
Juninho Bacuna and Collin Quaner remain doubts after missing out on the previous squad, and Wagner may seek to shuffle his pack as he searches for a winning formula.
Alex Pritchard is pushing for a recall against his former club, while fellow midfielder Jonathan Hogg and striker Steve Mounie could return.
Hugo Lloris remains a doubt and if the Frenchman does not make it at Huddersfield, it will mean a third successive start for Paulo Gazzaniga, with Michel Vorm still out with a knee injury.
Defender Serge Aurier will be assessed after picking up a thigh injury during the midweek Carabao Cup tie against Watford.
Erik Lamela has scored three goals in his last four appearances with the Argentine likely to benefit from Eriksen's absence.
- Huddersfield lost both Premier League matches against Spurs last season, scoring none and conceding six in the process.
- Tottenham are unbeaten in each of their last seven games in all competition against Huddersfield, though only two of those meetings have come in this century (W4 D3).
- Huddersfield have failed to score in all three of their Premier League home matches this season. Only twice in top-flight history has a team waited longer for their first home goal of the season (West Brom in 1921-22 and Everton in 1998-99 - both five games).
- Spurs have lost two of their last five Premier League away games (W3), more than they had in their previous 11 on the road (W6 D4 L1).
- Huddersfield haven't failed to win any of their first seven league games in a single campaign since 1997-98, when they ended up finishing 16th in the second tier.
- All three of Huddersfield's Premier League goals this season have come from set piece situations, including the only two from throw-ins in the division this season.
I've got to go for Tottenham. They aren't pulling up any trees at the moment but I remember what they did when they went up to Huddersfield last season with Harry Kane. Huddersfield need to come out and have a go but I think Tottenham will beat them quite easily.
Kane needs more than just a midweek break. I don't know if he went away on holiday but he needs three or four days to just get away, sit down with his family on the beach or something. That's a rest. I think a rest over here, training every day and then going home, doing the same old things is not really a rest if I'm honest. He needs to get away and chill.
PAUL PREDICTS: 0-3 (9/1 with Sky Bet)