An entertaining weekend of action in the Premier League concludes in the Monday Night Football this week when two London sides meet as Tottenham Hotspur look to return to the top of the table when they host Fulham.
A win will send Spurs back to the summit for another week while a victory for the Cottagers will see them move back into a top half position with which they have become accustomed to since they returned to the division.
Where to watch
The match will be shown live and in full on the Monday Night Football programme which will be shown on the Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Premier League channels. The show begins at 6.30pm ahead of an 8pm kick off.
I suspect when Tottenham Hotspur sold Harry Kane to Bayern Munich ahead of a ball being kicked this term, even their most optimistic supporter would not have had them down as being unbeaten eight games into the season and a win away from being two points clear at the summit. Credit has to go to the staff and the players for not letting that departure set them back like it could have done and if anything Spurs are thriving in his absence.
I think it is fair to say that there has been an air of fortune about their opening eight game unbeaten run. Liverpool had a perfectly good goal disallowed against them while they needed two incredibly late goals to see off Sheffield United and had to survive some big misses at Luton last time out but this is a Tottenham side who are good to watch, can defend when the need arises and are probably only going to get better the longer the campaign goes on as new players bed right in and they continue working under the most progressive manager they have had in a while.
After a positive first season back in the Premier League last term, things have been a little slower for Fulham this time around. That was probably to be expected given that they lost their own talisman Aleksandar Mitrovic early in the campaign. They have three wins from eight matches which sounds like an acceptable start to the season but those three wins have come against Everton, where they were outplayed, Luton Town, who could easily have left Craven Cottage with a point, and rock bottom Sheffield United.
Fulham are sitting towards the middle of the table but they could easily be five points worse off which would have them just two places and two points off the relegation zone. Goals have been a real problem for Fulham in this campaign. Their eight goals in eight games is only higher than Crystal Palace and the teams in the bottom three. If Fulham are going to enjoy the sort of comfortable season they desire that is something that needs to improve.
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Ange Postecoglou will be forced into a change to his Spurs XI for this match as Yves Bissouma is suspended after picking up a red card in the win over Luton last time out. Son Heung-min and Cristian Romero are fit to feature after overcoming knocks.
Fulham will also have to make a change to their side for this match with Issa Diop ruled out by injury. With Tosin Adarabioyo also out Calvin Bassey may have to be utilised at centre-back. Kenny Tete is another who will miss out.
I saw Fulham with my own eyes a few weeks ago and they didn’t look particularly good to me at all and in truth they haven’t really improved much since then. There looked to be no goal threat when I was there watching them against Luton and that was always going to be a concern once Mitrovic left for the Saudi money. I’m not overly convinced Fulham are as good at the back as their numbers suggest as there is surely only so many times Bernd Leno can get them out of trouble.
I expect a Tottenham Hotspur win in this match but they seem to have issues winning by more than a goal at the minute which sways me from taking them on a handicap so instead I will play the Tottenham dominance I think we’ll see in a different way. That comes in them having 18 or more shots. They have played three home matches this term and have had 17, 28 and 24 shots and are generally looking more and more fluent going forward under Postecoglou. With Fulham missing a full-back in Kenny Tete and likely having a bit of a makeshift centre-back in Calvin Bassey in the heart of the defence I expect Spurs to have a lot of joy going forward. On their travels, Fulham have conceded 19 shots to an average Everton side and 19 at Arsenal and I expect another barrage on the visiting goal here.
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