Tottenham host Aston Villa this Sunday at White Hart Lane. With both clubs having secured their Premier League slots, with a 3-1 win over Hull City last weekend fixing Villa's top-flight status, this Sunday's meeting is a mere formality with regard to the Premier League.
For Tottenham however, a point is crucial in securing their Europa League qualification. Sixth place in the league and a fourth consecutive Europa qualification await the North London club if they avoid defeat. Last time they met with Tottenham away at Villa Park, Villa failed to score leaving Spurs departing with a 2 nil win; a result Villa wouldn't mind replicating on the last game of the season, but are incredibly unlikely to, given their dismal performance in the league and their midweek humiliation against Man City.
At home, Tottenham have been solid in recent times, but their loss at West Ham last week could well take affect. The future of Head Coach Tim Sherwood remains uncertain. Heavy Premier League defeats against Manchester City, Chelsea and Liverpool, as well as a Europa League exit thanks to Benfica seems to have revoked Sherwood's prospects of staying on in the role. There was speculation around Louis van Gaal replacing him but it now appears he is Manchester United-bound. Ajax boss Frank de Boer and Southamptons Mauricio Pochettino are the reported targets. Villa boss Paul Lambert also conceded to being uncertain over his own future this week, although less so in comparison to Sherwood's.
Tottenham's Younes Kaboul is suspended for the clash with Villa following his red card last weekend, but fellow defender Jan Vertonghen could feature having turned out for the Under-21s after an ankle injury. Mousa Dembele may also make an appearance. Villa have a host of injuries, with Christian Benteke, Charles N'Zogbia, Libor Kozak and Jores Okore all absent. However, Marc Albrighton and Gabriel Agbonlahor could make the squad after recovering from injury.
KICK OFF: Sunday, 3pm
PAST THREE MEETINGS
Aston Villa 0 Tottenham 2 (Townsend, Soldado), Premier League, October 2013.
Aston Villa 0 Tottenham 4 (Defoe 2, Paulinho, Chadli), Capital One Cup, September 2013.
Aston Villa 0 Tottenham 4 (Defoe, Bale 3), Premier League, December 2012.
In 70 games at White Hart Lane between these two teams, hosts Tottenham have won the majority, 36, with 14 draws and 20 defeats.
Villa have not beaten Tottenham in the league in their last 10 attempts, since a 2-1 win in north London in September 2008. They have only won twice at White Hart Lane in the last 14 years.
Tottenham have netted 11 goals in their last three home games, though they haven't kept a clean sheet at White Hart Lane in over two months (1-0 v Cardiff, 2 March)
Villa have failed to win in seven of their last eight league games, a run only broken by their 3-1 victory over Hull last weekend
Villa have also failed to win away from home in their last eight attempts, since beating Sunderland 1-0 on New Year's Day.
Tottenham to win: 1.2
Aston Villa to win: 13.2