Tottenham Hotspur will be desperate to banish their Wembley woes when they host Borussia Dortmund in their UEFA Champions League Group H opener on Wednesday night.
Defending champions Real Madrid and APOEL complete what is known as this year’s ‘Group of Death’ and with Los Blancos widely expected to top the group, the battle for second-spot is likely to be contested between Spurs and Dortmund.
The Lilywhites, barring a disappointing home defeat at Chelsea aside, have begun the season on an encouraging note but the fact that they have won just once in their last seven games at home gives them a slight disadvantage for this continental tie.
September is here and Harry Kane is scoring goals like he normally does and that is a big plus for Mauricio Pochettino’s men but he wasn’t the only one who was impressive in their 3-0 win over Everton.
Dele Alli, was, but he won’t be featuring in Spurs’ first European game of the season due to his red card in the UEFA Europa League last season and without the 21-year-old, the English side might struggle for creativity.
Christian Eriksen, the heartbeat of this Spurs side will have to up his game as the Dane makes a bid to establish himself as a world-class playmaker.
Talking Corner: It’s a proud moment but for me, it’s about getting another 100 as soon as I can-Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane (www.tottenhamhotspur.com)
Injury concerns: Erik Lamela (hip), Danny Rose (knee), Victor Wanyama (knee) and Georges-Kevin N’Koudou (foot).
Suspension Alert: Dele Alli
Topping the Bundesliga with seven points from three games, Die Borussen seem to be coping with Ousmane Dembele’s departure to Barcelona fairly well.
New manager Peter Bosz has made them defensively solid, which is apparent from the fact that they are yet to concede in their last four games (all competitions).
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang continues to score goals like nobody’s business and the fleet-footed Gabonese is the away side’s chief threat and will count on young winger Christian Pulisic for support.
Marcel Schmelzer ruptured his ankle in their draw with Freiburg on the weekend and without the left-back and possibly, Marc Bartra, their defence does look a bit susceptible.
Talking Corner: I dreamed of playing in the Champions League as a child, and now it is about to become reality. Let’s see what happens-Borussia Dortmund striker Maximilian Philipp (BVBtotal!)
Injury concerns: Marco Reus (knee), Raphael Gurreiro (ankle), Andre Schurrle (muscle), Erik Durm (hip), Sebastian Rode (stress fracture), Marcel Schmelzer (ankle) and Marc Bartra (groin).
Suspension Alert: None