COMPETITION Premier League 
DATE Sunday 20th August 2017
VENUE Wembley
2.  Antonio RUDIGER
3.  Marcos ALONSO
7.  N'Golo KANTE
9.  Alvaro MORATA
10.  Eden HAZARD
11.  PEDRO
13.  Thibaut COURTOIS
14.  Tiemoue BAKAYOKO
15.  Victor MOSES
17.  Charly MUSONDA
18.  Loic REMY
19.  Diego COSTA
23.  Michy BATSHUAYI
24.  Gary CAHILL
27.  Andreas CHRISTENSEN
30.  David LUIZ
31.  Fikayo TOMORI
36.  Kyle SCOTT
38.  Jeremie BOGA

PREVIEW While Chelsea crashed to a humiliating home defeat to Burnley and ended with nine men in the process, they will be geed up for this game and we can expect a tough game, whichever eleven they put out.

In addition to being without Cahill and Fabregas, both red carded last week, they are missing the AWOL Diego Costa and Nemanja Matic, who is now at Manchester United, while Pedro definitely misses the game injured, while Eden Hazard might be available, but lacks match practice.  But Conte will set them up to frustrate and then try to break on us, like they did in the first half of the FA Cup semi-final last season.

Their manager moans that his squad isn't deep enough, but they have had numbers to the extent that they have 26 players currently out on loan on top of some of their young players they have let go.  The inability of the Pensioners to use their youngsters seems like they want to live up to their nickname.   For a club with 62 contracted players, if they can't put out a decent 18 on a match day, then something is wrong at that club.  With the defence hit by suspension and injury, expect a back three with the full backs tucking in to make it narrow, as they won't attack until they can outnumber the Spurs midfield.

Upfront without Costa, they still have Morata, Batshuayi and Remy, with  goals from midfield, so there will be a busy-ness you might not have seen from a Chelsea side for a while, as they seek to prevent their season starting with two straight defeats and ending up around the likes of Swansea City and West Ham United London. 

The way they set up at Chelsea will have changed from last season, with the changes that have taken place, but the fact that it is Tottenham mean they will raise their game and get into us early on.  Composure and playing our game, without getting drawn into their approach, will mean we should get something out of the match, but I think the fact that it is us will mean they will get a point.

PREDICTION Tottenham Hotspur    1         Chelsea    1
LAST SEASON'S MEETING For a look back at the match report, click here.
RESULTS HISTORY Click here for results, match reports and facts on meetings with Chelsea
Danny Rose (knee), Erik Lamela (hip), Georges-Kevin Nkoudou (foot) are all unavailable, but Kieran Trippier will be given a late test to see if he would be able to play against Chelsea.
Sent off last week, Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas miss the game at Wembley, while Pedro and Eden Hazard (both ankle) are not fully fit as yet.  Tiemoue Bakayoko is likely to make his debut for the Pensioners.

Sky Sports 1 - (live coverage)
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Radio :  
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Commentary may be found on
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Australia (Melbourne)
SEN  -  116 AM  Live Transmissions: TWI, Saturday. 12.45 & 15.00 matches
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South Africa 
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Sirius Satellite Radio  Live transmission: Saturday - 12.45, 15.00 (TWI) & 17.15 (BBC) Sunday - 14.00 & 16.05 (BBC) Mon, Tue, Wed - Various times (BBC)

Internet :   Live webcast  - subscribers only
BBC London - click on link to "Listen to Tottenham Hotspur live commentary" on top right hand menu.

Tottenham Hotspur  1 (0)                                                                       
Premier League
Sunday 20th August 2017
Chelsea  2 (1)

Kick off 16:00
Batshuayi (o.g.)  81m 30s Alonso  23m 33s
Alonso  87m 20s
Dier (foul on Luiz)  31 
Vertonghen (foul on Moses)  51 
Alderweireld (foul on Pedro)  83 
Kane (foul on Kante)  89


Rudiger  (foul on Kane)  30
Luiz  (foul on Eriksen)  38
Alonso  (dissent)  87  


Crowd :   73,587 Weather :  Warm, sunny
Referee :  Anthony Taylor (Greater Manchester) Assistant Referees :  Mr. Gary Beswick; Mr. Adam Nunn
Fourth Official :  Mike Dean  
Chelsea kicked off and played towards the West Stand end in the first half.
Game time : -  90 + 8 minutes.
Tottenham Hotspur : kit Chelsea : kit
  1  Hugo LLORIS  (c)

  2  Kieran TRIPPIER  (  9  Vincent JANSSEN  90+1)
  5  Jan VERTONGHEN      
33  Ben DAVIES  (17  Moussa SISSOKO  80)

15  Eric DIER       (  7  Heung-Min SON  68)
19  Mousa DEMBELE 
12  Victor WANYAMA

10  Harry KANE     
20  DELE Alli
Christian ERIKSEN

Unused subs: 
13  Michel VORM

27  Kevin WIMMER
29  Harry WINKS


  13  Thibuat COURTOIS

28  Cesar AZPILICUETA (c)
  2  RUIDIGER     
  3  Marcos ALONSO         

15  Victor MOSES
30  David LUIZ
  7  N'Golo KANTE
14  Tiemoue BAKAYOKO

22  WILLIAN  (11  PEDRO  78)

  9  Alvaro MORATA  (23  Michy BATSHUAYI  79  )

Unused subs: 
  1  Willy CABELLERO
36  Kyle SCOTT
31  Fikayo TOMORI
17  Charly MUSONDA


Manager :  Mauricio Pochettino Manager :  Antonio Conte
Sponsor :   AIA Shirt sponsor :  Yokohama Tyres
Kit Supplier :  Nike Kit Supplier :   Nike
Match report

As far as the media were concerned, this was another example of the Wembley curse and the Chelsea hoodoo, but when you looked at the game as a whole, the result might have gone Chelsea's way, but for long periods of the match they were second best.  Clinical finishing on the two shots on target they had gave them the three points and for all the Spurs dominance, the first game at the new "home" ground ended pointless.

The way the team played was good enough to beat most teams and all Hugo had to do was pick the ball out of the net twice (the second near the end he might have done better with).  While Spurs played some open, attacking football, Conte reverted to type and played a defensive system that won them the points but few friends.  He may become the new Mourinho and by using the 4-4-1-1 formation, literally park the bus, but that and not being popular will not affect the Chelsea fans, as they are used to being disliked. 

The visitors should have gone ahead as early as the fifth minute, when Morata found himself alone in the box and had a free header from six yards out, but managed to get it all wrong and put it wide, with only Lloris to beat and only needing to get it on target.  The early indication was that Taylor was going to let the game flow, but he soon starting exercising his whistle muscle and was allowing Luiz and Christensen to get away with crude challenges, while Rudiger looked like he only knew how to stop people getting past him with his hands.  With ten minutes on the clock, Harry Kane showed his sharpness to turn and get away a quick shot that Courtois got his knee behind, as his hands weren't strong enough to stop it and the ball luckily squirted wide for the keeper to get at the second attempt.  Lloris wasn't faring a lot better, as he tried to clear a back-pass and managed to hit Morata, who was closing him down, gratefully grabbing the ball as it bounced back to him rather than almost anywhere else it could have gone.

Dele made a good move on Christensen as a high ball came through into the Chelsea area from Dier, with the Dane missing the ball entirely, allowing a shot, but it was from a really tight angle and ended up ballooning over.  In Tottenham's next move, Mousa Dembele eased past couple of players before forcing Courtois to tip his drive over, with Luiz taking him out after the shot had left his foot.   The Chelsea defender being played in midfield put one into row Z before going down 25 yards out in a central position, when Dele turned his back on him and the contact was exaggerated to the maximum effect.  From the free-kick, Alonso curled the ball into the top right hand corner beyond Hugo's left hand stretch.  To say the goal was against the run of play would have been accurate, but Chelsea should have been in the lead already.

Tottenham needed a response and Eriksen put in a wicked free-kick that Bakayoko nodded just over for a corner and then Dele and Kane linked well for Harry's shot to be blocked out by the keeper's legs.  Then, moments later, Kane drilled a low shot from the right, through a defenders' legs, but it was dragged slightly wide of the post on the other side of the goal.  A flurry of yellow cards followed, with Rudiger wrestling Kane over, Dier catching Luiz with a stretching tackle and then Luiz, cynically dragging Eriksen back as he turned away form him and then having the cheek to moan about the booking (at length) to the referee.  From a free-kick awarded for the last foul on the list, Christian whipped in a pacy delivery to the near post and a number of white shirts just failed to get a touch, as that would have been all that was required for an equaliser.  That came even closer when Dele left Azpilicueta bemused by a neat touch one side of him and the Spurs midfielder ran the other side, setting up Kane, who cut inside from the left to hit a low shot that beat Courtois and bounced a long way out off the foot of the post.  There was still time left in the half for Ben Davies to fire a shot that had Courtois diving across to his left to beat away and then Vertonghen found himself up on the left to pull the bal across to Eric Dier, but he skied it with Chelsea defenders on top of him.

The break probably came at a bad time for Spurs, as they were applying pressure on the Chelsea goal and had started to put together some flowing football.  For Chelsea and their small band of fans, it was not just the sun that was shining on them, but fortune too.  Nothing brave about it, but they had turned around a goal in front.

The early signs were that Spurs would pick up from the end of the first period, with Kane back-heeling neatly into Eriksen's path as he ran into the box, but he just couldn't get the ball to sit down, before it was nicked off his toe.  A couple of corners (two of many) followed, with nothing coming from them, other than Luiz getting his body in the way of a Kane header, then Davies put in a threatening cross, which saw luck come Chelsea's way, with Azpilicueta's clearance hit Christensen and bounce softly back to the goalie, when there would have been a large number of places it could have ended up going.

Chelsea were howling for Vertonghen to be sent off when he went in high on Moses, but he only got a booking and perhaps that was unjustified, as Taylor missed the push on Jan by Willian that took him of balance and unable to control his tackle.  It wasn't the only thing that the referee missed, as he allowed Bakayoko to go through players and not get booked, with him kicking the ball away after each whistle for a free-kick too.  When Alderweireld picked out a diagnoal ball to the right, Trippier had read it and got on the end, passing the ball square across goal on the volley, but Kane was too far back to reach it and it was hacked away.  Around the hour mark, Spurs were pinning the Pensioners into their own last third and there was a series of corners and free-kicks, but they could not create anything clear cut, with so many blue shirts behind the ball.  Working the ball across the pitch 25 yards out, Spurs made a shooting opportunity for Victor Wanyama, but he sliced his effort wide and then Chelsea were n the break, with Morata turning and twisting, but not fooling Jan, who blocked his effort and took the ball wide.

It was Chelsea's turn to have a spell of attacking, with Moses blasting a great chance over the bar as he ran in from the right and then Willian hit a low shot that went past Lloris, but bounced back out, like Kane's from the foot of the post.  Christensen and Alonso blocked shots as Spurs stepped up the momentum of their moves and then Dembele almost put Kane through, but Harry was just back on his heels and couldn't get to it.  Chelsea made a double sub with Pedro and Batshuayi coming on and Spurs replaced Davies with Sissoko, having already brought Son on for Dier.  Bakayoko once more perpetrated a blatant foul near the left touchline and this time Christian's free-kick to the near post brought a goal, with Batshuayi finding the net past his own keeper from six yards out and Spurs were level with eight minutes left.

It was nothing more than they deserved, but Chelsea looked to go forward now and Alderweireld looked to have earned his booking when he fouled Pedro, who looked to have gone past him.  A Spurs corner saw Alonso booked for dissent and when the ball came in, it was cleared, with Dembele getting back in his own area to prevent Bakayoko getting in on goal, but the ball ran to Lloris, whose quick throw found Wanyama, 30 yards out.  A pass to his right would have found Sissoko and a break on, but he lost the ball and it went to Alonso on the left, who came into the box and hit a shot that went under Lloris' body to find the net and deflate Tottenham who looked to have salvaged a point.

The away fans loved it, but Spurs had been mugged by a display of defensive tactics that saw nine blue shirts back behind the ball as soon as they lost it.  It's not a new feature that Tottenham have struggled to break down packed defences, but the insistence of going through the middle rather than using the attacking full-backs made the game-plan effective for Chelsea.  The lack of urgency when we had the ball to go forward and the lack of players pulling the Chelsea structure out of shape made it harder for us than it should have been.  Plenty of possession and shot on goal, but little reward and while that works against lesser sides, Chelsea only needed two shots.

Tottenham lacked the sharpness and tempo that was as absent in the embarrassingly amplified drum that tried to generate atmosphere when the crowd flagged a little.   The ground did feel a bit more like home, with familiar faces around us and the Spurs regalia around the place.  And it was great to hear 70,000 Spurs fans singing, but the side need to give the fans something to sing about.  Although this was a good performance, a win would kick things off nicely.

Kirk Hammerton




Chelsea are proud of their place in London.  Their fame relates mainly to Kings Road, Chelsea, thus they think of themselves as the Kings Road of London.


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What you thought
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Other scores during this week :
Bournemouth 0 Watford 2 Saturday
Burnley 0 West Bromwich Albion 1 Saturday
Leicester City 2 Brighton & Hove Albion 0 Saturday
Liverpool 1 Crystal Palace 0 Saturday
Southampton 3 West Ham United London 2 Saturday
Stoke City 1 Arsenal 0 Saturday
Swansea City 0 Manchester United 2 Saturday
Huddersfield Town 1 Newcastle United 0 Sunday
Manchester City 1 Everton 1 Monday



League Table  2017-18
  P W D L F A Pts GD
1 Manchester United 2 2 0 0 8 0 6 +8
2 Huddersfield Town 2 2 0 0 4 0 6 +4
3 West Bromwich Albion 2 2 0 0 2 0 6 +2
4 Watford 2 1 1 0 5 3 4 +2
5 Manchester City 2 1 1 0 3 1 4 +2
6 Liverpool 2 1 1 0 4 3 4 +1
7 Everton 2 1 1 0 2 1 4 +1
8 Southampton 2 1 1 0 3 2 4 +1
9 Leicester City 2 1 0 1 5 4 3 +1
10 TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 2 1 0 1 3 2 3 +1
11 Arsenal 2 1 0 1 4 4 3 0
12 Chelsea 2 1 0 1 4 4 3 0
13 Burnley 2 1 0 1 3 3 3 0
14 Stoke City 2 1 0 1 1 1 3 0
15 Swansea City 2 0 1 1 0 4 1 -4
16 Bournemouth 2 0 0 2 0 3 0 -3
17 Newcastle United 2 0 0 2 0 3 0 -3
18 Brighton & Hove Albion 2 0 0 2 0 4 0 -4
19 Crystal Palace 2 0 0 2 0 4 0 -4
20 West Ham United London 2 0 0 2 2 7 0 -5


Position before match :  4th
Position after match :  9th
Position after the weekend :  10th


* Pub facts may not actually be true, but after a few pints everyone might think so.


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