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Premier League: How Tottenham Hotspur Will Line Up Against West Bromwich Albion

Thomas CooperFeatured ColumnistApril 11, 2014

Premier League: How Tottenham Hotspur Will Line Up Against West Bromwich Albion

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    Christian Eriksen put in another standout performance for Spurs against Sunderland. His manager Tim Sherwood will be hoping for more of the same versus West Brom.
    Christian Eriksen put in another standout performance for Spurs against Sunderland. His manager Tim Sherwood will be hoping for more of the same versus West Brom.Ian Walton/Getty Images

    Tottenham Hotspur take on West Bromwich Albion this Saturday looking to win their first away game since mid-February.

    Good form on the road—29 points from 16 Premier League matches—has played a big part in their healthy, if not totally satisfactory, league position of sixth.

    However, since beating Newcastle United 4-0, Tim Sherwood's side have endured miserable trips home from Norwich City, Chelsea and Liverpool after disappointing losses.

    Spurs will be looking to finish the season strongly with a top-four finish still mathematically possible. With this in mind, the Canaries defeat in particular will serve as a reminder not to take the relegation-battling Baggies lightly this weekend.

    At the time of writing, team news had not officially been confirmed by Spurs. Save for any injuries since Monday's win over Sunderland, though, Sherwood may field a largely unchanged side anyway.

Goalkeeper and Defence

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    Tottenham's goalkeeper for all occasions, Hugo Lloris.
    Tottenham's goalkeeper for all occasions, Hugo Lloris.Ian Walton/Getty Images

    Hugo Lloris must have been particularly frustrated to see another goal fly past him against Sunderland. Especially as one as avoidable as the situation Vlad Chiriches unintentionally put him in to allow Lee Cattermole to score.

    The Frenchman will almost certainly take to The Hawthorns pitch as he tries to keep a first clean-sheet since Tottenham's 1-0 win over Cardiff City in early March.

    Joining him in this endeavour is likely to be the same back four who lined up in front of him last time out.

    The fitness status of right-back Kyle Walker and centre-backs Jan Vertonghen and Michael Dawson is unclear—though PhysioRoom.com have the former two in with a chance of being fit for the weekend.

    Even so, for the sake of stability, an unchanged defence would be no bad thing for Spurs as they search for a little consistency down the homestretch.

    Chiriches will hope to have got any mistakes out of his system. Kaboul too will be keen for another steady day's work following on from his Sunderland display.

    Kyle Naughton and Danny Rose are also likely to continue, with another full 90 minutes in store for the highly worked full-back pair.

Midfield

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    Christian Eriksen is likely to be deployed out in left midfield again.
    Christian Eriksen is likely to be deployed out in left midfield again.Clive Rose/Getty Images

    Sherwood deploying Christian Eriksen in left midfield has drawn the ire of many Tottenham supporters perplexed at seeing the creative midfielder operating on the periphery.

    Against tougher opponents the Dane has struggled to influence proceedings from here. Versus teams who have granted him more space—Swansea City, Southampton and Sunderland among them—the general quality of his work has shone through.

    Eriksen is likely to be back there against West Brom. Having started Spurs' last four games, Aaron Lennon could continue on the opposite flank. Though Andros Townsend—lively if not especially impactful in his recent substitute appearances—will be chomping at the bit if Sherwood decides a change is due.

    Central midfield is particularly intriguing.

    Nacer Chadli and Paulinho were selected this past Monday. Both were unsurprisingly more comfortable joining their team-mates in attack but were solid enough defensively.

    Still, the feeling that a better team than Sunderland would have exposed their more adventurous leanings is hard to shake.

    Do not be surprised to see Nabil Bentaleb drafted back in to sit a little deeper while still looking to bring his team forward quickly with his passing.

    Chadli appears to have charmed Sherwood of late with his hard work and willingness to run directly at opponents. He may get the nod ahead of Paulinho and others here.

Attack

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    Emmanuel Adebayor returned to the team and goalscoring form on Monday night.
    Emmanuel Adebayor returned to the team and goalscoring form on Monday night.Ian Walton/Getty Images

    Barring injury midweek, Emmanuel Adebayor and Harry Kane should both be back up front for Tottenham.

    Sherwood's return to a two-man attack paid off handsomely against Sunderland, with the two netting three of their team's five goals.

    Kane was impressive enough in his first Premier League start for Spurs that his manager will likely not hesitate to keep him in his team.

    Back to form (Monday's brace were his first goals since scoring against Dnipro in late-February) and fitness, Adebayor is just about a certainty too.

    With West Brom likely to push for a much-needed win to strengthen their survival chances, Sherwood's new forward combination may be presented with ample opportunity to add to their respective tallies.

     

    Predicted Tottenham line-up vs. West Brom: Lloris; Naughton, Chiriches, Kaboul (c), Rose; Lennon, Chadli, Bentaleb, Eriksen; Adebayor, Kane.

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