2020-21 UEFA Europa League: Second Qualifying Round – Lokomotiv Plovdiv vs Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur begin their 2020-21 UEFA Europa League adventure in the Second Qualifying Round as they visit Lokomotiv Plovdiv at Stadion Lokomotiv. 

Under a changed format, this tie takes place across one leg with the winners visiting Botosani of Romania or North Macedonia’s Shkendija in the next Qualifying round next Thursday.

 

Team News

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Plovdiv have no fresh injury concerns with a full squad available for selection.

Tottenham could welcome Giovani Lo Celso back from an ongoing groin injury if he can prove his match fitness ahead of this match.

Serge Aurier (knock) will face a late fitness test but Japhet Tanganga (thigh) remains absent.

 

Stat Attack

  • This is Lokomotiv Plovdiv’s first-ever meeting against Tottenham Hotspur in all competitions, whilst also marking the first time that Spurs have faced Bulgarian opposition in any UEFA competition.
  • Plovdiv lost their two previous UEFA matches against English opposition, losing 4-2 in 2005-06 UEFA Cup Play-Offs to Bolton Wanderers, with both legs lost by 2-1 results.
  • Tottenham have won just two of their last six matches in all UEFA Competitions (W2, D1, L3) in which they were the designated away team.

 

Prediction

After a disappointing performance against Everton on Sunday, Tottenham have to turn up and quickly get on the front foot because if they start slowly, Plovdiv will surely fancy their chances if can be clinical in early stages of both halves.

Plovdiv however like to play a three man defence which will cause Spurs serious issues if they don’t get on the front foot, because the Bulgarian team will get tighter with players dropping deep to limit’s Tottenham’s opportunities.

I however can see Tottenham comfortably winning if the likes of Harry Kane and Son Heung-Min can make their superior quality count, but am going for a narrow win given how rusty they looked on Sunday.

Prediction: Lokomotiv Plovdiv 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur

Result: Lokomotiv Plovdiv 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur

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