Tottenham Hotspur’s home clash with Fulham in the Premier League takes place on Wednesday evening after fixture rescheduling.
Spurs were originally set to take on Aston Villa but due to an outbreak of coronavirus at Villa’s Bodymoor Heath training ground, the fixture was postponed after liaison with the Premier League.
Fulham have stepped in to replace Villa, with the Cottagers’ initially supposed to play their game with Spurs a fortnight ago – that too was called off at the time due to Covid-19.
As such, Fulham have had only a couple of days to prepare for the trip to Spurs, leading manager Scott Parker to label the rearrangements as ‘scandalous’.
Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho wasn’t too fussed however, highlighting that he would have been preparing his squad for a game on Wednesday regardless.
Although far from ideal for Fulham in terms of the short notice, they do head in to the clash at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium unbeaten in five matches in all competitions, although four of those have been draws.
Scott Parker’s side are currently in the Premier League relegation zone and three points from safety, but they do have two games in hand over 17th placed Brighton, who take on Manchester City in the earlier kick off.
A win for Fulham and defeat for Brighton at the Etihad swings the pendulum in the London club’s favour, as that will draw them level on points with their struggling South Coast counterparts.
However, a City win over the Seagulls won’t be welcomed by Tottenham, who have their eyes set on regaining a top four spot after Everton’s victory at Wolves on Tuesday nudged Spurs down to 5th – an Albion win in Manchester will be of great benefit to Spurs.
Mourinho has suggested in the past that his Spurs side are ‘a pony in a horse race’, and after his ex-club Manchester United went top of the league yesterday by beating Burnley, he may have a point considering there is now a 7-point gap between Tottenham and top spot.
Three points against Fulham will be expected of Spurs, but they’ll have to fare without Giovani Lo Celso and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, with the former not expected to feature until next month and the latter still nursing a shin injury sustained in the Carabao Cup semi-final with Brentford.
Tottenham’s FA Cup tie with 8th tier Merseyside club Marine AFC gave Mourinho the chance to rest Harry Kane and Son Heung-Min, who no doubt will be back involved against Fulham.
The visitors have a clean bill of health much to the pleasure of manager Scott Parker, with no fresh injury concerns for the club to contend with.
Mario Lemina and Ademola Lookman have had time to recover in Fulham’s two-week break between Premier League games and should be available for selection.
Tottenham v Fulham kicks off at 8.15pm on Wednesday 13th January.