Tottenham vs. AEL Limassol: Date, Time, TV, Live Stream, Europa League Preview

Tom SunderlandFeatured ColumnistAugust 28, 2014

Tottenham Hotspur's Nacer Chadli, center, celebrates his goal against Queens Park Rangers with teammates during their English Premier League soccer match at White Hart Lane, London, Sunday, Aug. 24, 2014. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)
Sang Tan/Associated Press

Tottenham will attempt to seal their place in this season's Europa League on Thursday evening, when they welcome AEL Limassol to White Hart Lane for the second leg of their playoff encounter.

A draw would be enough for Mauricio Pochettino's hosts to progress after taking a 2-1 lead in Cyprus last week, but the Londoners won't be taking anything for granted, home advantage or not.

Spurs will be hoping to advance as far as possible in their European hunt this term and, ahead of the weekend visit of Liverpool, they will hope for a comfortable progression against AEL.


Date: Thursday, Aug. 28

Time: 7:45 p.m. BST/2:45 p.m. ET

Live Stream: ITV Player (UK) beIN Sport Play (US, subscription required)

TV Info: ITV 4 (UK), beIN Sports 1 (US)


The Pochettino Effect

Sang Tan/Associated Press

Spurs haven't been the most adventurous outfit in their summer recruitment, but an enamouring factor in Pochettino's early days at the club has seen the Argentine show what can be done with the current squad.

Last summer's sale of Gareth Bale resulted in a mass influx of new faces at Tottenham, which both Andre Villas-Boas and Tim Sherwood struggled to fit into a sustainable system.

Eric Dier looks like a superb purchase already
Eric Dier looks like a superb purchase alreadySang Tan/Associated Press

Pochettino's arrival has brought about a more recognisable, consistent approach, and fans of the club will be happy to see the likes of Nacer Chadli, Etienne Capoue and Roberto Soldado impressing as might have previously been expected.

The manager is quoted by the Premier League's official Twitter account regarding the impression he's attempting to leave, giving the club an identity they've lacked for some time:

Unbeaten in their last nine outings (including pre-season), Spurs look a more in-form outfit than Limassol, who have lost two of their last five matches, keeping just one clean sheet.

Tottenham are yet to concede in their two Premier League matches this season, and a defensive solidity is something Pochettino will work especially hard to transfer from his success with Southampton.


Ones To Watch

Matt Dunham/Associated Press

Among those aforementioned players rebuilding their careers at Spurs following a season of disappointment, no project draws more intrigue at present than Erik Lamela.

The Argentine was of vital importance in the first leg, coming on for a 20-minute cameo and dragging his side from a 1-0 deficit into an extremely valuable lead, goals scored by Soldado and Harry Kane.

So good has Lamela's turnaround been that his following performance in the 4-0 thrashing of QPR at the weekend earned Player of the Week credentials from's Ben McAleer:

Meanwhile, Italian expert James Horncastle says the former Roma star was merely waiting on a clean bill of health before his fortunes would turn:

Having had such a massive input in that first leg, Lamela may be used from the start on Thursday, although there's a chance Pochettino may hand his playmaker a rest.

Another figure who could be utilised is Ben Davies, who featured for the full 90 minutes at the Antonis Papadopoulos Stadium, and will be eager to get more minutes on the board with his new club.

Davies is just one of those hoping to make his transition into the side as smooth as possible, and Spurs may have finally come upon the left-back solution they've been seeking for some time depending on the Welshman's success.

Success breeds success, and Spurs will be full of confidence heading into that key game with Liverpool if they can dismiss Limassol to secure European football on Thursday.