Tottenham Hotspur v KAA Gent Betting Tips: Spurs can turn it around at Wembley

Feb 21 2017

This was arguably the most surprising result in the first leg of the Europa League matches last week with Tottenham Hotspur coming surprisingly unstuck against Belgian side Gent in Belgium.

Tottenham managed to recover from two defeats on the spin to comprehensively beat Fulham in the FA Cup which will be a huge confidence booster going into this match.

As mentioned on my weekend write-up, Spurs are excellent at the back and have one of the best defensive records in the Premier League with just 18 goals conceded and 11 clean sheets. However, that changes in European football this season and, in their seven matches played in both the Champions League and Europa League, they have kept just two clean sheets and are conceding, on average, one goal per game.

Spurs of course will be playing this match at Wembley rather than White Hart Lane. Much has been made of Mauricio Pochettino’s poor form at Wembley, but it is certainly worth noting that Spurs easily dispatched CSKA Moscow in their last match at the iconic venue. If Tottenham play a strong team against what is really a fairly average side in the form of Gent, which I fully expect them to, then they should be beating them in front of their own fans no matter the venue.

Gent took full advantage of Spurs’ poor performance in Belgium last Thursday to come out victorious and, perhaps just as importantly, without conceding an away goal which, even if Gent had won 2-1, would have been extremely damaging.

Despite beating Tottenham in midweek, Gent continued their stutter in the Belgian league and could only draw against Standard Liege at the weekend, keeping them down in 8th in the Belgian top flight. This was again down to their poor goal-scoring record which now looks even worse and it is worth noting that Hein Vanhaezebrouck’s side have not scored more than twice in their last 15 competitive matches – a run stretching back to late November.

Defensively they are pretty good and proved so against Tottenham last week, however, with Harry Kane seemingly back in form following his hat-trick against Fulham, they may find Spurs difficult to stop in this return fixture.

Away form has been dodgy for the Buffalos and they are without a win on their travels in all competitions in six matches. That latest victory away from the Ghelamco Arena actually came in the Europa League back in early December, but prior to that, they had not won a Europa League-proper match in their entire history.

Tottenham are the favourites here and rightly so. Pochettino will have them right at it for this match and I expect them to recover from last week’s shock and put Gent to the sword from start to finish. ‘Tottenham Hotspur to Win Both Halves’ is well worth a go at 7/4.

More Europa League tips can be found here.

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