Preview: Royal Antwerp v Tottenham Hotspur

Royal Antwerp v Tottenham Hotspur

Venue: Bosuilstadion


After our hard-fought victory over Burnley (1-0), we are back to Thursday night’s Arsenal territory (until we get back to our rightful place; Champions League Football). We face Royal Antwerp.

For those of you that don’t know Antwerp, it is a city in Belgium and the capital of Antwerp province in the Flemish Region. It has a population of 520,500. It is the most populous city in Belgium, and with a metropolitan population of around 1,200,000 people, it is the second-largest metropolitan region after Brussels. As for the football team: Royal Antwerp Football Club, often simply referred to as R. Antwerp or simply Antwerp, is in the city of Antwerp. Founded around 1880 as Antwerp Cricket Club by English students residing in Antwerp.

Antwerp is regarded as the oldest club in Belgium. At first, there was no organised football played by its members, until 1887. Being the oldest active club at the time, it was the first club to register to the Association in 1895. So,  there you have it. One side note – for me – if it wasn’t for the virus, I would be out there now. Antwerp is a lovely place. Damn that COVID-19.

So, to Team News:

Gareth Bale will start against Royal Antwerp in the Europa League. He has been restricted to just 80 minutes of action in his second spell with us, and was an unused replacement in the win at Burnley on Monday night.

Defender Eric Dier and midfielder Tanguy Ndombele have not travelled with the squad as they are rested before Sunday’s match against Brighton. Mourinho will make several changes, with the likes of Davinson Sanchez, Steven Bergwijn, Harry Winks and Carlos Vinicius likely to join Bale in the starting XI.

Mourinho will name a strong starting lineups in this competition, helped with the recent arrivals of Gareth Bale and Carlos Vinicius.

We are heading into the encounter in Belgium looking to extend our unbeaten record in all competitions to 11 matches. Antwerp have also put together a similar run, recording six wins and a draw from their most recent seven fixtures. Ivan Leko’s men have scored at least two goals in each of those encounters, they have failed to keep a clean sheet on every occasion.

Antwerp are currently sitting at the top of their domestic league, but conceding 14 goals in 10 league fixtures will only provide us with the encouragement to attack.

I believe that Bale and Vinicius will  start in attack, likely being joined by Erik Lamela. Of the players who started the fixture with Burnley on Monday evening, Ben Davies and Moussa Sissoko may be the only players who keep their place in the side. Although Dele Alli did not feature at Turf Moor, he is in line to feature among the substitutes.

My possible Tottenham Hotspur starting lineup is:

Hart; Aurier, Sanchez, Davies, Reguilon; Sissoko, Winks; Lamela, Lo Celso, Bale; Vinicius

My Prediction

I am going for a 2-1 or 3-1 result.

Best regards, Glenn