Liverpool’s clash with Tottenham is one of the biggest games of the season and Spurs fans believe Jose Mourinho could end the Reds’ long unbeaten home run.
This is a big one.
The Reds welcome a buoyant Spurs side to Anfield on Wednesday, with both teams level on points at the top of the Premier League.
Mourinho has the bit between his teeth, as he often does during his second season at clubs, and attacking duo Son Heung-min and Harry Kane are arguably the most in-form players in the division.
Jurgen Klopp will be demanding a response from Liverpool after their disappointing 1-1 draw at Fulham, however, and a win would be a big signal of intent.
Ahead of the match, we spoke to football.london’s Spurs reporter Rob Guest (@RobGuesty) to speak about Wednesday’s game, the title race and much more.
How would you assess Spurs’ start to the campaign?
It has been a very good start to the season for Tottenham, and it could be a year to remember going on the team’s current form.
A number of people predicted that Spurs would struggle to finish in the top four initially, but there’s a very good chance they will contest for the title with Liverpool.
There have been a few bumps in the road along the way, notably the late draws against Newcastle, West Ham and Crystal Palace, but back in September all fans would have snapped your hand off if you had offered them to be in top spot heading into the game at Anfield.
What’s your stance on Jose Mourinho?
Last season was tough for Mourinho, given the major injuries the team suffered, but I was always confident that trophies would follow in his first full season.
Mourinho definitely divides opinion, but he is a winner and his record in the game speaks for itself.
While a number of Spurs fans may have not been keen on Daniel Levy’s choice to appoint him last season, I don’t think they will be complaining too much if he does indeed bring silverware to the club, as they have been starved of it for so long.
He most definitely could be the man to ensure the good times return to north London.
Who have been Spurs’ three best players so far?
A number of Tottenham players have really caught the eye this season, but there are three standout candidates.
Harry Kane has been in exceptional form and it seems bizarre that some people doubted that he would score goals in a Mourinho team.
The England captain has not only proved he is an exceptional goalscorer, but that there is also so much more to his game, such as his holdup play, vision, defensive work and his ability to register assist after assist.
Son Heung-min also deserves a big mention as he has started the campaign on fire with 13 goals and seven assists in all competitions.
He has formed a formidable partnership with Kane and they are going to be key to the club’s big aspirations come May.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has also proved to be an absolute transfer bargain since his £15 million move from Southampton.
A number of fans may have turned their nose up at the signing initially, but he has been exceptional in midfield and given Spurs a platform to go on and win games due to his ability to win the ball and get it moving forward.
He is undoubtedly the signing of the summer in the Premier League.
Is a Premier League title challenge on the cards?
Mourinho may not publicly admit it, but deep down he will no doubt believe that Spurs can indeed go all the way.
The team have started the Premier League season in top form and confidence is sky high at present and that only bodes well for the coming months.
Built on a defence that doesn’t look like conceding goals at present and with some quality players in attack, such as Tanguy Ndombele, Giovani Lo Celso, Son and Kane, Tottenham most definitely can contest for the top prize.
The key to that will be coming out of the festive period in a strong position, however, as they have some very tough games coming up.
Switching our attention to Liverpool, do you still see them as the team to beat?
It appears that it’s going to be that way when you look at the teams in the title race.
Liverpool have had some bad luck with injuries this term, but it says an awful lot about Jurgen Klopp‘s side that they are still joint-top, as they could have well slipped down the league table.
The Reds may not have many options at the back at present, but they still have players in attack that can put sides to the sword.
They will definitely be there or thereabouts come May.
Who do you fear most on Wednesday night?
It has to be Liverpool’s front three, as they have continued to score goals for fun this campaign.
Spurs did a decent job of keeping them quiet back in January, however, and they are going to have to do exactly that once again on Wednesday evening.
They have done extremely well keeping the likes of Man City and Chelsea goalless recently, so they will be confident of doing likewise at Anfield.
Where do you see the key battles taking place?
The key battle for me is going to be Liverpool’s makeshift defence against the Tottenham attack.
Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez are a huge miss for the Reds, and Kane and Co. could really give the back line a major headache over the course of the 90 minutes.
Fail to nullify the Tottenham attack and Liverpool could very well be looking at a second league defeat of the season.
Finally, hit us with your prediction…
It is going to be a very tight game, but I think that Spurs will leave with the points.
I will go for Mourinho to get the better of Klopp with a 2-1 victory.