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Lokomotiv Plovdiv vs. Tottenham Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
15 September 2020
Thursday 17 September
Stadio Lokomotiv (Plovdiv) – Europa League
Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham head to Bulgaria to face Lokomotiv Plovdiv in their Europa League Second Qualifying Round clash. Spurs’ Premier League season began with a home defeat to Everton, so they’ll be looking for a morale-boosting victory in Bulgaria.
These two sides have never faced each other before in competitive action.
Lokomotiv Plovdiv boss Bruno Akrapovic should have a fully fit squad to pick from for this tie, with striker Birsent Karagaren their key man in attack.
Tottenham are likely to still be without Giovani Lo Celso and Japhet Tanganga through injury, with Mourinho potentially rotating his options and starting Davinson Sanchez and Moussa Sissoko in Bulgaria. Sissoko was introduced at half time of Sunday’s defeat to Everton in place of Dele Alli, with the switch believed to be tactical and not an injury to the England midfielder.
Mourinho was also critical of Spurs’ fitness against the Toffees, suggesting a poor pre-season had left his side underprepared for the onset of the new campaign.
Lokomotiv Plovdiv vs. Tottenham Preview and Predictions
Lokomotiv Plovdiv are four games into their new domestic season in Bulgaria, with three wins from their first four matches. Akrapovic’s side overcame Montenegrin side FK Iskra in the First Qualifying Round with a 1-0 away win.
Spurs kicked off their 2020-21 Premier League season with a disappointing 1-0 defeat at home to Carlo Ancelotti’s Everton. Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored the only goal of the game in the second half, with Tottenham unable to rouse themselves to find an equaliser.
Mourinho will be determined to avoid an embarrassing European exit in this clash, and should field a strong side in midweek. Lokomotiv Plovdiv are unlikely to present a potential banana skin for Mourinho, with an away win exceedingly likely.
Despite their low key start to the new campaign, Spurs does still possess plenty of goalscoring power in their ranks through Harry Kane, Steven Bergwijn and Son Heung-Min, so should rack up a few goals and a comfortable victory.
Tottenham to win 1.19
Spurs need to reach the group stages of the Europa League this season, with Mourinho set to be under pressure to secure some silverware at the end of the campaign. The new one leg format for the qualifying rounds of the competition will also help to ease their testing workload in the coming weeks.
Tottenham to win from behind 6.15
Mourinho is likely to rest certain key names for the long trip to Bulgaria, with Harry Winks, Dele Alli and Lucas Moura all potentially left in the UK. However, the Portuguese boss will likely call on Kane to lead the line in this game, with the England skipper almost certain to open his account for the season against the Bulgarian minnows if he sees some action.