It's far from a Mersey Paradise for Tottenham fans who have had 23 years of hurt
Liverpool v Tottenham, Saturday 5.30pm, Sky Sports 1
Harry Kane experienced his first Christmas Day in Chingford, East London in 1993. The Barbie doll was the best-selling toy that Christmas and Mr Blobby had bagged himself an unlikely number one. Now, 22 years down the line and Harry Kane’s deadly eye for goal has Tottenham gunning for the Premier League title.
But worryingly for Tottenham fans, in those 22 years they’ve won just once at Anfield in the league.
In May 2011 goals from Rafael van der Vaart and Luka Modric gave Tottenham all three points at Anfield, but that’s the only time they’ve travelled to Liverpool in the league and won since August 25 1993. In that time they’ve faced each other on 20 occasions at Anfield, with the home side picking up 14 wins and six draws – including a 4-0 hammering almost two years ago to the day.
The slightly brighter news for Spurs, in the midst of this cloud of misery, is that at least their side are scoring. In 50 per cent of those winless games at Anfield they have found the onion bag, so it least it gives the travelling support something to cheer about, albeit only briefly.
This year it could be different however. Tottenham go into the match with the Premier League title within their grasp, while Liverpool’s season is hinging on a Europa League clash with Borussia Dortmund. Leicester are the only side with a better away record than Tottenham, with Maurico Pochettino’s men picking up an average of 1.93 points per game on the road.
Liverpool have already dropped points at home to Norwich, Sunderland, West Brom and Crystal Palace amongst others. Anfield may not be the fortress it was once considered…
But Jurgen Klopp may still have enough to derail Tottenham’s title bid. A Martin Skrtel-inspired collapse against Southampton ended Liverpool’s 10-game unbeaten run in all competitions, a run that included beating both Manchester clubs convincingly.
Spurs’ attacking threat of Harry Kane, Dele Alli and Christian Eriksen is matched by the trio of Daniel Sturridge, Phillipe Coutinho and Firmino for the Reds. Both teams have found the net in 54 per cent of Liverpool’s home games and 60 per cent of Tottenham’s away games, so it’s no surprise to see that it’s a short shot for the two teams to find the onion bag on Saturday night.
A third of Tottenham’s away games this year have finished all square, with both teams finding the net on all five occasions. Similarly Liverpool have drawn five of their 13 home games with both teams finding the net each time. It’s a very tempting punt that both teams find the net and the match ends up level.