Having won just three of his last 10 games at the helm, Jose Mourinho has some serious work to do to get his players in order, especially as his side are now winless in four.
A 1-0 defeat hosting Liverpool last time out can certainly be excused, but stalemates on the road at Norwich and Middlesbrough, as well as a defeat at Southampton were less than encouraging.
Spurs may be at home for this clash, where excluding losses to Jurgen Klopp’s side and Chelsea, they’ve won all four games since Mauricio Pochettino departed by an aggregate scoreline of 14-5.
However, with just the solitary clean sheet when Burnley came to the capital and that their only one in 13 games across all venues under new management, Boro will fancy their chances of registering a goal again in this fixture.
Johnathan Woodgate and assistant Robbie Kean were both playing for Spurs when they last won a trophy, with the former scoring the extra-time winner in the League Cup final that day in 2008, but while they endured a difficult spell earlier in the campaign as Boro went 10 games without a win at one point, they’ve since gone W6-D3-L2, including four victories from their last six unbeaten outings.
Woodgate was even named Championship manager of the month for December, with their last two away games coming as 2-0 victories over promotion-chasing duo West Brom and Preston North End.
Both Teams To Score
Boro have now failed to score just once in 13 fixtures, so the price surrounding both teams to score appeals at odds-against.
Although Spurs are very short to win, we would be hesitant to get involved with the match outcome, despite the respective form of both sides. Mourinho remains a serial cup winner and will be desperate to achieve what Pochettino couldn’t – winning a trophy – which would certainly increase his standing amongst a fan base that held a lot of affection for the Argentine and his teams’ playing style.
Further, when Championship teams have forced a replay against Premier League sides in this tournament since 2014/15, the top-flight outfit have won 10 of 16 unbeaten matches as they appear to step up their game.
However, eight of the last nine of these since February 2017 have still seen both teams find the net, and with Boro possessing in-form former Man Utd academy graduate Ashley Fletcher at the sharp end, that looks the most fruitful angle to take.
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