After finishing second in the Premier League last season, Tottenham will be looking to go one better this season. However, they face a tough trip to newly promoted Newcastle, who look to be in the best position of the promoted teams. They showed their class by winning the Championship last season and are an interesting team back in the Premier League this season.
Tottenham have not signed anyone for their first team so far this summer, sticking with their belief that the squad doesn’t need changing. With many youngsters in the team they are hoping they will be better this season due to player progression, rather than new faces. Newcastle have strengthened a little, but not as much as we thought they would and that may catch them out early in the season.
Newcastle won the Championship last season to bounce back to the Premier League at the first time of asking. They showed their class in that league and have kept together many more players than the relegated teams normally would. That should serve them well here, plenty of the players with them have previous Premier League experience with the club.
Newcastle have played six pre-season games this summer, winning four, drawing one and losing one. That have looks ok, but they have not really played any quality teams this summer, so those results and their good form may be a little misleading. However, it will have boosted their confidence and they will head into the season on the back of some good wins both during pre-season and from the end of their Championship season.
Tottenham eventually finished seven points behind Chelsea in the title race, but they did have their own eight point gap back to Manchester City in third. They impressed throughout the season and look to have the ability to challenge for the title. It has surprised me they haven’t bought a player or two to strengthen their squad, but with Kyle Walker being the only outgoing player, they are in a very similar position to last season.
Tottenham have only played four pre-season games this summer, less than most other clubs. They have won two and lost two in an up and down start, but their final game was a good, convincing win over Juventus. That will have put them on the right path and they can head into the new season with confidence that they can again finish in the top four, and challenge for the top spot.
With new players arriving at the club, and probably more still to arrive, it may take time for Newcastle to realise what their best eleven is. Centre back Florian Lejeune arrives from Eibar and it is likely that he will be asked to marshal the defence. One player who may not start straight away is Jacob Murphy, but I can’t wait to see the young winger play in the Premier League.
With the exception of Kyle Walker, who has left Tottenham for Manchester City, Spurs start the season with the same squad as what they ended last season with. Whether or not that is the right decision long term, what it will do is allow them a quick start this summer, with everyone knowing their team mates and their role in the team. I expect to see them having a very good opening month because of this and it wouldn’t surprise me if they set the early pace.
Top Betting Tips
This will be both a tricky tie for Tottenham on the opening weekend and also a tough start for newly promoted Newcastle. The one thing that has helped me make my decision in this one is that Tottenham arrive here on the back of a good 2-0 win over Juventus and with a settled squad. With more players set to arrive, and newcomers already at the club, the same can’t be said for Newcastle, who may struggle during the first month because of that.
Thanks to their settled squad, I am going to back Tottenham to win the game 2-0 this weekend, which can be backed at 8/1 with Ladbrokes. That offers good value and I think we will see Tottenham get off to a good start this month, they are a team to watch. Newcastle will be ok this season once they have their squad settled but at the start they may struggle a little and this is a very tough opening game for them against Tottenham.