The Great Battle of London: Spurs v Chelsea
Antonio Conte's title holders are in disarray after the 3-2 loss to Burnley at Stamford Bridge in their opening game, while the Italian coach seeks new signings to bolster his squad. Mauricio Pochettino is yet to add a single new face to his squad despite losing Kyle Walker to Man City this summer, but Spurs looked in fine form as they beat Newcastle 2-0 away to open their campaign in style.
While Spurs fans may be the happier of the two sets of supporters, the north Londoners fared poorly at Wembley last term and Chelsea are still the reigning champions, despite what recent performances may suggest.
Pochettino has no fresh injury concerns apart from Kieran Trippier, though the right wing-back is expected to recover from "minor ligament damage" for the September 9 trip to Everton.
Victor Wanyama and Heung-min Son could well be restored to the starting XI after being benched against Newcastle, and Pochettino has a big call to make over whether to stick with the 4-2-3-1 formation or opt for the 3-4-3 which served him well last season. Conte has few options in defence with Gary Cahill suspended, meaning Andreas Christensen will likely be given a chance to shine.
Cesar Azpilicueta will revert to the right of the back three with Victor Moses on the right flank, while David Luiz could be handed a midfield role with Cesc Fabregas also suspended and Tiemoue Bakayoko still out injured. Alvaro Morata started on the bench against Burnley but looked lively when he came on, meaning the £58million signing will almost certainly get the nod on the left of a front three.
That means Jeremie Boga may be left disappointed, with the youngster cruelly subbed off on his Premier League debut against Burnley following Cahill's red card.
Predicted starting line-ups
Spurs XI: Lloris; Vertonghen, Alderweireld, Dier; Walker-Peters, Wanyama, Dembele, Davies; Eriksen, Alli, Kane
Chelsea XI: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Rudiger; Moses, Luiz, Kante, Alonso; Willian, Batshuayi, Morata
After Chelsea’s bad start to the season,the massive pressure is on them to prove that they are still the defending champions. However, this pressure together with the uncertainty that manager Antonio Conte has might end up costing them the points in this one. The sending off of their captain Gary Cahill as well as their playmaker Cesc Fabregas also further dents their thin squad.
While Spurs have a natural weakness when they get to the Wembley Stadium, they must have come to terms with the fact that this will be their home-ground for the season. The versatility and consistency of the Spurs team will be what gives them the win here. The worse they can do is get a draw which may result from Chelsea’s fighting spirit.
This looks like a convincing win for the North Londoners but Chelsea will put up a good fight.