Tottenham will be looking for a statement win when they take on bitter rivals Chelsea in a mouthwatering clash on Sunday afternoon. Spurs have a rotten record at Stamford Bridge, and have remarkably tasted victory just once in the Premier League era courtesy of a 3-1 win back in 2018.
However, under Antonio Conte this Tottenham team look to be building something special, and they got their new campaign off to the perfect start with a 4-1 thrashing of Southampton on the opening day of the season.
Chelsea will be a totally different kind of test, however, and here Express Sport takes a look at the starting XI Conte is likely to pick as his side aim to pick up a rare three points in west London.
Goalkeeper – Lloris
Despite conceding to a surprise early James Ward-Prowse strike, Hugo Lloris enjoyed a relatively comfortable day against Southampton last week. The French shot-stopper is Spurs’ longest-serving player, and is starting his 11th campaign with the Lilywhites.
The 35-year-old remains one of Conte’s most trusted lieutenants, and is in line to make his 418th appearance in all competitions for the club.
Defence – Romero, Dier, Davies
Spurs look set to complete the permanent signing of Cristian Romero for £41m in the coming days following his hugely successful loan spell from Atalanta. The tough-tackling Argentinean has been worth every penny of that fee so far as he has completely transformed his side’s backline, and the 24-year-old looks set for another start vs the Blues.
Eric Dier grabbed Spurs’ second goal vs the Saints last week with a cute header from Son Heung-min’s cross, and he will start as the man in the middle, with the ever-reliable Ben Davies on the left-hand side of the back three.
Midfield – Emerson, Hojbjerg, Bentancur, Sessegnon
Despite facing criticism at times last season, Emerson Royal was one of Spurs’ stand-out performers vs Southampton, and there should be no reason for Conte to drop the Brazilian as he looks to gain some momentum.
Summer signing Yves Bissouma is still waiting for his first competitive start, and he may have to be patient again, with the tried and tested combination of Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Rodrigo Bentancur most probably favoured at the Bridge. The ever-improving Ryan Sessegnon is expected to be given the nod on the left flank.
Forwards – Kulusevski, Kane, Son
After missing out on the first game of the season through suspension, £60m summer signing Richarlison is available to Conte for the first time, and a grudge match against Chelsea is exactly the sort of clash he would relish.
However, it is hard to see how any of Dejan Kulusevski, Harry Kane or Son could be dropped at the moment, and Richarlison is likely to be used as an option off the bench. It will be intriguing to see what kind of impression he can make if Spurs need him to come up with the goods in the second half.