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Tottenham Hotspur Season Preview for 2019/20 With Odds and Predictions
The next team I’m going to explore in my series of EPL season previews is Tottenham Hotspur. As in my other posts, I will focus on the 2019-2020 season.
Naturally, analyzing the previous campaign and the betting odds for the new will be included in this preview.
Spurs are one of the most exciting teams in England right now, but the question is, for how long?
Some of the star players and the manager Mauricio Pochettino might be tempted by a move to a bigger club where success will be pretty much guaranteed.
But let’s start with the season that just ended.
Tottenham 2018-19 Season Review
Ever since Mauricio Pochettino was assigned as the Spurs manager, the club has been overachieving massively. And yet, Tottenham has failed to win a trophy during this time.
It feels like the side is almost as good as the best in England and Europe, but not quite. I think that the 2018-2019 season is a great example of that.
Let’s start with the English Premier League. For many months, Spurs were right behind Manchester City and Liverpool. Despite the enormous resources spent by the reigning champions and the Reds, Tottenham was able to keep grinding results.
It wouldn’t be far-fetched to say that Spurs were part of the EPL title race until the start of the spring or so. Considering the squad at Pochettino’s disposal and the way he developed his best players instead of buying them, that’s an astonishing achievement.
Let’s not forget that Spurs managed to build a new stadium, and this was one of the reasons the club didn’t buy any players in the summer.
Naturally, the lack of depth and some bad luck with injuries put an end to the title dreams of the club in the spring. Spurs collapsed in the EPL and were close to losing their place in the top 4. Fortunately for them, Arsenal and Manchester United missed on multiple opportunities to overcome Tottenham.
At the end of the day, the club did book a place in the UEFA Champions League for next season. That was the number one goal and the realistic target.
Since I mentioned the biggest European tournament, it’s time to talk about the successful run of the club there. Spurs reached the final of the UCL for the first time in their history but were beaten by Liverpool. Again, they came painfully close, only to lose it at the end.
If you add the lack of success in the other domestic cups, the overall feeling around the club is weird. Tottenham is overachieving, and Pochettino is most certainly leading the side forward. On the other hand, Spurs have been left empty-handed for a couple of seasons in a row.
That’s dangerous because the manager and some of the top players might be tempted to leave. Which leads us to…
What Tottenham Needs This Summer
The biggest goal of Tottenham should be to keep Mauricio Pochettino at the helm. Fortunately for Spurs, Real Madrid appointed Zinedine Zidane once again, so the Argentinian will most likely stay for at least another season.
That will help with the second priority of the club, which is to keep its core. The likes of Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen, and many more have attracted plenty of potential suitors from all across Europe.
I feel that most of them owe Pochettino too much and would like to repay him and the club. As long as he is there, Tottenham should be able to keep its best player. However, the bigger salaries and the guaranteed trophies might lure both the manager and the players away.
At this point, there are two squad members that are questionable. Christian Eriksen’s contract expires in 2021, and Toby Alderweireld has a release clause that allows him to transfer to any club willing to pay £25 million for him.
One of the ways to prevent that would be to invest in the squad. We already saw that working with the same core can suffice, but you need fresh faces to reach the next level.
The good news is that Pochettino is exceptional when it comes to developing guys with potential and getting the best of them. The club is not forced to buy superstars. A couple of solid players that could grow under the manager should do the job.
It’s hard to identify a specific position that requires strengthening, but Spurs probably would benefit from signing a better striker than Llorente. The Spaniard was decent this season, but he’s 34 and not getting better.
A back-up for Eriksen would be a good idea, as well as some cover for the full-backs. I would say that there is no need for world-class players — just decent performers that could provide enough depth for the core.
Simply put, Tottenham should not let the fatigue that almost ruined this season happen again in the years to come. For that purpose, Pochettino should be able to rotate more and give regular rest to his best players.
Tottenham Betting Odds for 2019-2020
It’s time to check the Tottenham betting odds for 2019-2020 and see if there is any value available.
The more optimistic fans of Tottenham might be looking at the English Premier League title. The odds for Spurs to win it currently stand at 15.00. While that’s a really juicy price, I simply don’t see how the team could gather 95+ points.
That’s the very minimum I expect from the champion, considering how strong Liverpool and Manchester City are. It’s not realistic for the Spurs to reach that, so let’s take a look at the top 4 market.
888sport offers 1.65, and I think that’s a great option. If we exclude Liverpool and Man City, there will be two spots up for grabs.
The main competitors, in theory, will be Chelsea, Arsenal, and Manchester United. The Blues will probably be without Hazard, and there’s a real opportunity for them to replace their manager, too. On top of that, there’s a potential transfer ban, so I’m not sure that Chelsea will be able to compete next season.
Arsenal should be better than this campaign, but the lack of Champions League soccer will harm the team’s selection. The Gunners are in desperate need of fresh faces, and they don’t have the money to get them.
Finally, there’s Manchester United. As we saw towards the end of the previous season, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has so much work to do. The squad is far from acceptable right now, and the Red Devils could lose Paul Pogba. I’m not even sure that’s a bad thing at this point, but the fact is, United will probably struggle.
Under such circumstances, Tottenham should be able to get into the top 4 rather comfortably. The price of 1.65 looks like a good bet.
The price of 17.00 for the Spurs to win the UEFA Champions League seems fantastic if you consider the fact that they just reached the final of the competition.
If you dig a bit deeper, I don’t think it’s realistic to expect that from Tottenham. Domestic rivals Manchester City and Liverpool will be challenging once again, while the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid, Juventus, and Bayern Munich should be up there too.
Many of Europe’s biggest clubs will be disappointed by the previous season and will invest millions in new players. The Spurs simply can’t compete with that.
Other Domestic Competitions
You can get betting odds around 10.00 or so for the Spurs to win the FA Cup or the League Cup. My prediction is that Pochettino will once again prioritize the bigger tournaments.
Tottenham’s strength is in the core of the team; the squad players are not that good. Winning the domestic cup usually requires a lot from the second group, so I don’t expect much.
The next Spurs season will be determined mostly by the summer that lies ahead. If Pochettino stays and keeps his main players intact, Tottenham should at least qualify for the UEFA Champions League once again.
If the Argentinian manager is given the funds to attract a couple of players and expand the depth of his squad, who knows what’s going to happen? In theory, the Spurs shouldn’t be able to mess with the big boys, but having one of the best managers in the world can close the gap.
Of course, there’s a nightmarish scenario in which the Spurs lose Pochettino, some of their best players, or both. If that’s the case, we might see the downfall of the club. Fortunately for the fans, such an outcome seems highly unlikely at this point.