6 mins: Action for Robert Sanchez! Reguilon gets the ball in the area. He checks back, assesses his options, decides none of them are any good, spins again and shoots high but too close to the Brighton keeper, who helps it over the bar.
3 mins: Son’s pass finds Lamela sprinting into the left side of the area, and he waits for Kane to catch up before sliding a low cross towards the far post, but it’s nicked off his toes as the goal loomed!
The players are out and will be in action very shortly, after a silence in memory of Nobby Stiles, and fallen members of the armed forces.
The absence of Maupay and Aaron Connolly, plus the change in goal, is certainly intriguing. There’s no mention from Potter of any kind of injury issues, so we’re left with no choice but to jump to wild conclusions. Any suggestions, beyond the obvious training-ground punch-up?
Graham Potter doesn’t have much to say in his pre-match interview, refusing to explain Neal Maupay’s absence while of the change in goal he says: “Rob Sanchez comes in. A goalkeeper with some fantastic attributes, we think he can help us in this game.” So, there’s that. Meanwhile, Jose Mourinho says this:
I hope we see a good reaction. I hope we see the team that fought hard and tried everything to win at Burnley. I hope we see the team that played so well in so many of the other matches. I want to believe that against Antwerp it was a question of motivation, concentration, being ready or not being ready for a match that could be a difficult match. I was disappointed not so much with individuals but in the general attitude of the team.
Robert Sánchez comes into the Brighton team, making his league debut for the team he joined back in 2015. Tottenham meanwhile bring Harry Kane, Son Heung-min, Eric Dier, Tanguy Ndombele, Moussa Sissoko and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg back into the team after sitting out the Europa League defeat to Royal Antwerp. Dele Alli, Carlos Vinicius, Serge Aurier and Steven Bergwijn drop out of the squad altogether. Or if you want to compare this team to their last league line-up, Reguilon and Lamela are in, and Davies and Lucas Moura are out.
The team sheets have been handed in, and these are the players picked:
Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris, Doherty, Alderweireld, Dier, Reguilon, Sissoko, Hojbjerg, Lamela, Ndombele, Son, Kane. Subs: Winks, Bale, Hart, Rodon, Lo Celso, Lucas Moura, Davies.
Brighton: Sanchez, Webster, Veltman, Burn, Lamptey, White, Bissouma, March, Gross, Lallana, Trossard. Subs: Ryan, Mac Allister, Alzate, Welbeck, Propper, Zeqiri, Bernardo.
Referee: Graham Scott.
Tottenham, like Brighton, collected their first league points with a victory on 20 September, but unlike today’s opponents they have kept going, and they will go second if they win today. But Brighton’s five-point haul doesn’t even faintly reflect their performances, which have tended to be rather good, and it is not inconceivable that they will win at Spurs today for the first time in 39 years, even with Lewis Dunk suspended.
Jose Mourinho will celebrate the first anniversary of his appointment at Spurs later this month, a prospect which he relishes. “I am really happy because one year more or less since we arrived, there was, in our opinion, a great evolution in the team at every level,” he tubthumped. Time, as always, will tell. In the next couple of weeks Spurs play Brighton and then West Brom, before a run of games against Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal(, Crystal Palace) and Liverpool which will really show the extent of their evolution. The Seagulls will fancy their chances of exposing a few faultlines themselves, I’d wager.
Anyway, hello! Here’s Jonathan Wilson saying encouraging things about Spurs:
at 1.00pm EST