Tottenham Hotspur v Morecambe: Looking to Swerve the Banana Skin
At first glance, it seems that the draw for the 3rd round of the FA Cup has been kind to Spurs for the second year in a row. Having breezed past non league Marine at the start of 2021, Morecambe are now in the firing line.
Former manager Jose Mourinho could afford to put out the second string last January. Alfie Devine became the youngest ever Spurs goal scorer while Carlos Vinicius notched a first half hat trick.
This time around, League One Morecambe could pose more of a threat, so will new boss Antonio Conte treat them as lightly?
A strong side faced Chelsea in the EFL Cup semi final first leg on Wednesday and the return game is set for next week. It will, therefore, be interesting to see how Antonio plays this. I’m not the Spurs manager but I could have made as good a job as some of the incumbents in the last 30 years and I suspect we’ll see a number of changes backed up by a strong bench.
In terms of absentees, neither Ryan Sessegnon nor Steven Bergwijn were available for Wednesday’s game at Chelsea. Speaking ahead of that match, Conte was hopeful that Ryan would be ready for the Morecambe match but he was less optimistic about the Dutch midfielder.
With Cristian Romero still out, the squad is close to full strength if the manager needs it.
There are no surprises in the match result market: Spurs are red hot favourites for the win in 90 minutes at 1/11 with 10Bet and SportNation while the draw follows at best odds of 12/1 with QuinnBet.
As for the away win, the top price on a victory for Morecambe is quoted at 40/1 and that’s also with QuinnBet.
Team selection could play a part and we only have to look back to that 2-1 loss to NS Mura to see what our second string are capable of. Morecambe may be below Mura’s level but the danger is always there if you don’t take the FA Cup too seriously.
First goalscorer betting has been slow to fill up but, of the bookmakers that have declared so far, Unibet have Harry Kane listed as favourite to open the scoring at best odds of 21/10. Son Heung-Min follows at a top price of 15/4 with VBet while Dane Scarlett is included at a best of 4/1 with VBet once again.
Other names to consider from within the Spurs camp include Lucas Moura at 11/2, Dele Alli at 15/2, Giovani Lo Celso at 10/1 and Tanguy Ndombele at 10/1 – all with VBet once again.
The first Morecambe player to get a mention is Cole Stockton who can be claimed at best odds of 14/1 with Betway.
Away from individual options, Both Teams to Score is quoted for Sunday’s game at best odds of 31/20 with Coral and Novibet. If you want to take the ‘No’ bet on BTTS, this carries the shorter figure of 8/15 with 888Sport.
In the Total Goals betting, a stake Over the 2.5 line is much shorter this week at best odds of 6/19 with 10Bet. If we push one step further, we can claim 5/7 with MansionBet but could this be the day to be brave and head Over 4.5? It’s the first time that we see an odds-against figure in this section with 10Bet quoting a top price of 19/10.
That leaves us with some Correct Score options and a stake on Spurs 4 Morecambe 1 could attract interest at 12/1 with Betway and Ladbrokes. Alternatively, a more modest 2-1 win is quoted at best odds of 16/1 with 10Bet but, if you think it’s all going to go wrong, the 2-2 draw after 90 minutes can be found at 50/1 with NoviBet.
Who are they?
We know that Morecambe play in League One and those of us who don’t follow the lower ladder that closely will also be aware that the club was a non league outfit until recently. I must admit that I was surprised to learn that the club known as the Shrimps were promoted to the Football League way back in 2006.
Morecambe are in the third tier this season, having been promoted via the League Two playoffs at the end of the 2020/21 season. Currently, they are hovering above the drop zone in 19th place with 23 points from 24 games. That puts them just one point ahead of Lincoln City who occupy the final relegation slot.
We mentioned that Cole Stockton had the lowest odds for Morecambe in the first goal scorer betting. The 27 year old is their leading scorer by some distance with 18 goals this season and his nearest challenger is Adam Phillips with just six.
Spurs fans will be familiar with at least one player in the Shrimps’ squad. Jonathan Obika made just four appearances at the old White Hart Lane before going on some substantial travels. He’s 31 now and has been with Morecambe since the start of this season but has only featured in four games so far.
It’s one of those ties where we should be easing through no matter who starts the game. The loss away to NS Mura will give us a warning ahead of the fixture and, at the very least, there should be a strong bench and a stronger starting XI than we saw in that Europa Conference League match.
The Shrimps could serve up a banana skin but the additional benefit of playing the game at home suggests that we should be comfortable. As Tottenham fans, we know not to be overconfident so I’m just going to sign off with some side bet suggestions.
Lucas Moura to score is a particular favourite in this type of match. He’s scored useful goals in all competitions this season and is more likely to start with Steven Bergwijn sidelined. A few changes at the back and in goal could leave us more vulnerable and Both Teams to Score looks promising, as does Over 4.5 goals.
- Both Teams to Score at 31/20 with Coral
- Over 4.5 Goals at 19/10 with 10Bet
- Lucas Moura to score at any time in 90 minutes at 11/10 with Vbet