While Antonio Conte watched his side struggle to create many clear-cut opportunities against Sporting, former Tottenham youngster Marcus Edwardsnearly scored an exhilarating solo goal before another pair of Ruben Amorim’s attackers got the job done for the hosts in the dying embers.
Substitutes Paulinho and Arthur Gomesboth came off the bench to score in added time for Sporting as Tottenham fell to their first Champions League loss of the season, although Conte did not believe that a defeat was an accurate reflection of how the game went.
However, Conte’s reluctance to refresh his XI did not pay dividends, but Spurs have been handed an ideal opportunity to recover against the Premier League’s basement side, with the game going ahead despite concerns that Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral would force a postponement..
A 2-1 win over Fulham two weekends ago saw Tottenham move onto 14 points from their first six games of the new league season, and the third-placed Lilywhites could end the day top of the
table if Manchester City fail to overcome Wolverhampton Wanderers at lunchtime. Current leaders Arsenal will hope to respond against Brentford one day later.
Tottenham welcome Leicester to North London having strung together a seven-game winning streak at home in all competitions, but creative concerns continue to bedevil Conte, whose side are far from well-rested compared to Rodgers’s under-performing crop.
Some Leicester fans would have welcomed the chance to see their side test their mettle against 17th-placed Aston Villa last weekend, while others would have accepted the postponement of that clash with open arms given the way their side have performed so far.
In what turned out to be Graham Potter’s final match in charge of Brighton & Hove Albion before his quickfire Chelsea appointment, the Seagulls were the predators and the Foxes were the prey in a 5-2 South Coast romping, which extended Leicester’s losing run to five matches.
Rodgers and co can no longer turn to the transfer market to solve their lengthy list of problems – although there was a reluctance to splash the cash in the summer anyway – and the visitors remain rock bottom of the standings with a measly one point from six games.
One would not knock Leicester for going down to Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United, but performances in all areas of the pitch have been alarming nonetheless, and only Bournemouth (18) have shipped more goals than the Foxes (16) so far.
Tottenham did the double over Leicester by an aggregate scoreline of 6-3 in the 2021-22 Premier League season and are now out to record their fourth successive win in this fixture, and the hosts’ confidence tank could do with a top-up before facing Arsenal after the international break.