Tottenham welcome Sunderland to White Hart Lane on Sunday knowing nothing but a win will be good enough if they’re to topple arch-rivals Arsenal in the battle for a place in the Champions League qualifying stages.
With just 90 minutes left of the current campaign, Spurs are still in with a chance of finishing fourth but must hope Arsenal fail to pick up three points at Newcastle while themselves recording victory over the Black Cats. Even though they sit just one point behind the Gunners, a draw would not be an option for Villas-Boas’ men as their goal difference is inferior by 15.
Spurs will crank up the pressure on Arsenal by netting some early goals against 17-placed Sunderland, who are guaranteed of a place in next season’s Premier League following Wigan’s relegation on Tuesday evening.
On paper, it doesn’t bode well for Paolo Di Canio’s men though, who will be without the services of suspended duo Stephane Sessegnon and Craig Gardner as they look to bounce back from last week’s crushing 6-1 loss to Aston Villa.
Sunderland have pocketed just three points from a possible 18 on the road in recent months and are up against a Tottenham side who haven’t lost in seven domestic meetings.
KICK-OFF: Sunday, 4pm
PAST THREE MEETINGS…
Sunderland 1 (O’Shea), Tottenham 2 (Cuellar OG, Lennon), Premier League, December 2012
Sunderland 0, Tottenham 0, Premier League, April 2012
Tottenham 1 (Pavlyuchenko), Sunderland 0, Premier League, December 2011
- Sunderland have only won one of their last eight league games against Tottenham and lost nine of their last 11 at White Hart Lane.
- If Gareth Bale scores, he will equal the most goals ever scored by a Tottenham player in a Premier League season (21 by Teddy Sheringham).
- On 69 points, Tottenham are currently just one point behind their best ever points tally in a Premier League season. A draw will equal it, a win will topple it.
- Emmanuel Adebayor has netted five times in his last six Premier League appearances during the month of May.
- Sunderland striker Danny Graham has now gone 1034 minutes in all competitions without finding the back of the net.
Tottenham to win: 1.3
Sunderland to win: 12.00
TV: Live on Sky Sports 2 at 4pm, highlights on BBC1 at 10:25pm.