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After an incredible performance and a 2-1 win over champions Man City before the World Cup break, Brentford will be looking to make it back-to-back wins against ‘Big Six’ sides when they face Spurs at the Community stadium. Two goals, including a 97th minute winner from Ivan Toney, gave the Bees a famous victory at the Etihad to record what would be their first away win of the season.
Brentford have never lost a Premier League game when they have opened the scoring, winning 13 and drawing three of the 16 occasions when they have scored first and will be hoping to take advantage of Tottenham’s famous slow starts this campaign.
Spurs go into the game fourth, looking to open a gap to the teams circling them for a Champions League spot, whilst also closing the gap to arch rivals Arsenal at the same time. Antonio Conte’s men completed an incredible comeback in their last match before the World Cup break against Leeds, coming from behind three times to earn a much needed 4-3 win thanks to two goals in two minutes from Rodrigo Bentancur late on.
Tottenham will look to build on their impressive Boxing Day record, where they are unbeaten in each of their last 15 matches (W7, D4), while no player has scored more Boxing Day goals than Harry Kane (9), who has found the back of the net in each of his six Premier League appearances on this day.
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Despite being charged by the FA for breaches of their betting rules, Ivan Toney is fit and available for selection for Brentford and will be looking to pick up where he left off before the mid-season break for the World Cup. The Englishman, who was not on the plane to Qatar, has had an impressive season on the pitch, scoring 10 goals and providing a further two assists in his 14 Premier League appearances so far in 2022/23 and it’s at home where Toney has particularly shone.
Averaging a goal or an assist every 90 minutes at the Community stadium, the former Newcastle man has terrorised opposition defences , causing them non-stop problems, being directly involved in 54% of Brentford’s home Premier League goals (5 goals, 2 assists) and it’s not just his goalscoring that has been impressive this term.
The forward has been the perfect target man, making more flick-ons (45) and more lay-offs (21) than any other Premier League player, showing just how important he is to this Brentford side.
One English forward that was always going to make the World Cup squad was captain Harry Kane, with the Spurs man providing three assists and scoring two goals in his five World Cup appearances. The striker will be looking to get back into the groove once more in the league and put his penalty miss against France, and Spurs teammate Hugo Lloris behind him and shine once more for his club side.
No player has had more shots on target in the Premier League in 2022/23 than Kane (28, joint with Erling Haaland), with the Spurs striker hitting the target with 70% of his total shots and converting 21.8% of his chances to make him the second highest goalscorer in the competition this term (12 goals).