Draws have not always been on Spurs’ side and, yet again, they will have to do it the hard way, the Spurs way. In the League Cup, Tottenham were pulled out to play Arsenal and in the FA Cup are to play in-form Leicester. And in Europe, whilst Liverpool and Manchester United cope with easy ties, Spurs have to play one of the Serie A title challengers, the team that put them out of last year’s competition at this very stage: Fiorentina.
Spurs, arguably, have a stronger and fresher look this season, and despite the setback at Anderlecht, will be looking to extend their good run of form in Europa beyond the group stages. The Italian side Fiorentina were last season’s opponents and, Spurs took a 1-1 draw to Italy but eventually ended up losing 1-3 on aggregate. The Spurs players will be geared up and will be ready to exert revenge on their next opponents not only at White Hart Lane but in Florence also.
Spurs play the second leg at home this season, the opposite to last season, so will have the advantage for the second leg which could, potentially, go to extra time and penalties so home advantage will be crucial. If Spurs can grab an away goal in Italy, it will set them up perfectly for the second leg.
Was last time out unlucky?
Two defensive errors and a penalty box scramble were the goals for Fiorentina. With the pairing of Alderweireld and Vertonghen in the heart of the defence and the defensive errors limited, Spurs look like they’ll be in a much better position than they were last campaign. With Kane smashing in the goals up front and the return of Mousa Dembele imminent, Spurs will be threatening but will need to contain the likes of Illicic and Kalinic come February.