Tottenham Hotspur v Brentford: One Step from Wembley

tottenhamSpurs’ New Year’s schedule is already underway and on Tuesday night it’s back to cup action. On paper, the semi final draw for the EFL Cup was a kind one as we drew Championship side Brentford as opposed to either of the two Manchester clubs but clearly there is a threat from a team that so nearly made it into the top flight last time out.

The Bees are in decent form once again as they sit comfortably in the playoffs and are just two points off the automatic promotion places. It could be a tough assignment even though we are clear favourites to make it through.

Team News

A return to Cup action this week offers Jose Mourinho the chance to give some senior players an 11-day rest but he may not choose to take the opportunity. Against Stoke City in the last round, the manager fielded a strong starting XI that included Hugo Lloris and Harry Kane.

It could be similar on Tuesday night with the club just one step from a Wembley final. In terms of definite absentees, Gareth Bale and Giovani Lo Celso are ruled out through injury while Matt Doherty begins his suspension.

Match Odds

Tottenham are red hot favourites to progress and are available at just 1/2 with VBet and Novibet to win in normal time. The draw in 90 minutes is listed at best odds of 18/5 with SportNation and RedZone while the win for Brentford is on offer at 6/1 with Unibet and 888Sport.

Those are the prices for the result in 90 minutes and that leaves us with a separate To Qualify market which would take into account any extra time. Here, Spurs shorten to best odds of 2/9 with VBet while Brentford can be backed at a top price of 10/3 with BetFred.

Clearly we should win it but much may depend on the strengths of the respective starting line ups so let’s take a look at the men who can swing this tie.

Side Markets

Harry Kane

Harry Kane

It isn’t the bookmakers’ job to second guess the starting XIs and that’s why Harry Kane starts as clear favourite to open the scoring. Our main striker is listed at best odds of 11/4 with Unibet and 888Sport while reserve forward Carlos Vinicius is on offer at a top price of 18/5 with the same two sportsbooks.

Also available at a best of 18/5 is Son Heung-Min while Dele Alli is at 13/2 and Lucas Moura at 7/1. Once again, all of those figures come from Unibet and 888Sport. Other options include Brentford’s Ivan Toney at 7/1 with Unibet and 888Sport while additional picks for Spurs come via Steven Bergwijn at 15/2 with Betway and Tanguy Ndombele at 13/1 with Unibet.

In our other, regular side bets, Both Teams to Score is on offer at best odds of 16/19 with VBet. Recently, it’s a bet that has struggled to come in with its usual regularity but Brentford’s scoring record suggests that it might be a good option this time.

Total Goals betting shows a top price of 7/10 with VBet for anyone who wants to back Over the 2.5 line. As an alternative, a push to Over 3.5 extends that figure to a top price of 28/17 with SportNation and RedZone.

Our final suggestions come from the correct score markets where a 3-1 home win might be one to consider at 11/1 with Novibet. The 1-1 draw is listed at 15/2 with GentingBet while those with a completely pessimistic outlook might want to back a 2-1 win for Brentford which can be claimed at 18/1 with VBet.

Brentford’s Road to the Semi Finals

brentfordA Josh Dasilva goal saw Brentford edge past Newcastle in the quarter finals and they are the only Championship team remaining in the competition. The Bees have also beaten Fulham, West Brom and Southampton to get here so they have no issues with facing Premier League opposition. Dasilva’s strike was one of four goals this season but the man to watch is Ivan Toney who leads Brentford’s scoring stats by some margin with 16.

There are some head to head stats available although most of these come from the start of the last century when Spurs regularly met Brentford in the Southern League. The most recent encounter was in September 2000 when we won a two-legged Worthington Cup tie. After a goalless draw at Griffin Park, goals from Oyvind Leonardsen and Steffen Iversen sealed the 2-0 aggregate win.

Overall, there have been 41 previous matches between the two sides: Tottenham have won 22, Brentford have won six and there have been 13 draws.

Verdict

As we’ve seen, Brentford have claimed four Premier League scalps on their way to the semi finals and they clearly can’t be underestimated. The EFL Cup offers a genuine chance of silverware and, while we can’t second guess Jose at any point, we suspect that he’ll put out a strong starting line up. There is the opportunity to offer a break this weekend as we travel to face Marine in the FA Cup with just a quick turnaround ahead of next Wednesday’s EPL clash away to Aston Villa.

The other option is to leave the likes of Kane and Son on the bench if anything goes wrong. Either way, we should be progressing to Wembley but it may well be closer than the odds suggest.

With Tottenham as short as 1/2 to win in normal time, we certainly won’t be getting involved in the result betting but, as always, there is no shortage of side markets. Regular readers of these previews will be familiar with some of these suggestions but they’ve generally been productive for us and we’ll stick with a reasonable formula. Remember, all of the picks involved are for the result in 90 minutes and exclude any extra time that might be played.

Best Bets

  • Both Teams to Score at 16/19 with VBet
  • Over 3.5 goals at 28/17 with SportNation
  • Lucas Moura to score at any time in 90 minutes at 47/20 with 888Sport

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