Tottenham Hotspur and Brentford kick off Saturday’s Premier League action in a London derby showdown at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Having seen their Champions League qualification hopes fizzle into thin air, Spurs are now facing a fight to secure a place in one of Europe’s tournaments next season.
Ryan Mason has done little to steady the sinking ship since replacing Cristian Stellini as caretaker manager, with the team falling to a 2-1 defeat to Aston Villa last weekend.
Tottenham have now won just one of their last six games (D1, L4), which leaves them needing maximum points against their capital rivals to bolster their chances of a European finish.
Brentford have also fallen behind in their unlikely quest for a continental spot, but the Bees still have an outside chance of snatching a place in the top seven.
However, they will need to build on last weekend’s comfortable 2-0 success over West Ham United knowing consecutive derby victories will do their European chances the world of good.
Tottenham have endured a disappointing season, having lost 13 league games this term, and another defeat will take them closer to their tally of 15 in the 2008/09 campaign.
They have also shipped in 59 goals this season – the most of any side in the top half of the table. Not since the 2007/08 campaign have they conceded more (61).
Spurs have been on an appalling run of form, but facing Brentford could spark a change in fortunes as they have lost just one of their last nine meetings with the Bees (W4, D4).
They have lost their final league game on home turf in just two of the last 14 seasons (W11, D1), and they need to muster another victory at the weekend to bolster their European hopes.
Brentford are on course to beat last season’s 13th-placed finish, which will constitute a successful campaign for Frank’s side, but they could still have one eye on the Europa Conference League spot.
However, they will need to beat Spurs in North London – a feat they have not achieved in their previous four tries (D1, L4) while hoping other results go their way.
The Bees are notorious for being a pain to the top teams, and they will back themselves to give Spurs a run for their money, especially with their impressive London derby record.
Brentford are unbeaten in their last eight league meetings against fellow sides from the English capital and are looking to win four in a row for the first time since their League Two days.
Premier League Form
Tottenham Hotspur: LDLWL
Tottenham Hotspur vs Brentford Potential Line-ups
Tottenham Hotspur (3-4-3): Fraser Forster; Cristian Romero, Eric Dier, Clement Lenglet; Pedro Porro, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Oliver Skipp, Ben Davies; Dejan Kulusevski, Heung-min Son; Harry Kane.
Brentford (3-5-2): David Raya; Zanka, Ben Mee, Ethan Pinnock; Aaron Hickey, Frank Onyeka, Mathias Jensen, Vitaly Janelt, Rico Henry; Bryan Mbeumo, Yoanne Wissa.
We Say: Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 Brentford
Tottenham can ill-afford another slip-up in the race for a place in Europe, especially with Brentford and Villa hot on their trail.
However, Mason’s struggling Whites may have to settle for a hard-fought share of the spoils in what should be a thrilling London derby.
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