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The League Cup/Capital One Cup showdown between Tottenham Hotspur and Nottingham Forest is scheduled today evening (19:45 hrs). It is an important game for the Spurs whoâ€™ve suffered a lacklustre start to the season. With their most recent 1-0 EPL defeat to West Brom on Sunday, theyâ€™ve notched a four-game loss across all competitions in the new season. Theyâ€™re currently placed ninth on the Premier League table, behind such squads as Swansea, Leicester, Aston Villa and West Ham.
Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino recently said that theyâ€™d like to â€˜win something this seasonâ€™. The former Southampton manager will be hoping for a win to bolster his sideâ€™s confidence well in time for their huge game against arch rivals Arsenal this weekend.
For Nottingham Forest, it is a chance to continue displaying their excellent form so far into the season. Manager Stuart Pearce has helmed the club since July this year, and Redsâ€™ successive winning streak earned him the leagueâ€™s â€˜Manager of the Monthâ€™ nomination for August.
Spurs and Reds last went head-to-head in the 2005 FA Cup fifth round game. Spurs won the away game 3-0 at City Ground, but not before being held to a 1-1 draw at a home game. Between 1989 and 1993, the sides have met thrice in the League Cup, and on all occasions, Reds have emerged victorious. However, in their last four encounters across all competitions, Spurs have got the better of Reds.
Interestingly, both Tottenham Hotspur and Nottingham Forest have lifted the League Cup four times each. While the Spurs’ latest win was in 2007-2008, Redsâ€™ dates back to 1989-1990. Spurs have progressed past the third round eight out of ten times, while Reds havenâ€™t made it past any of their last three round games.
Michel Vorm is expected to make his goalkeeping debut for Spurs following his move from Swansea City. Aaron Lennon, Benjamin Stambouli, Roberto Soldado, Kyle Naughton, Fazio and Ben Davies are likely to feature. Winger Andros Townsendâ€™s leg injury has healed, but Kyle Walker, who has been out of action since March, will most likely sit this one out and possibly a few more. The 24-year old Spurs defender is recuperating after surgery for persistent abdominal pain. Pochettino has said that playersâ€™ name and reputation donâ€™t mean anything to him; they must perform to show that they deserve to be in the line-up.
Pearce has said that everyone in the squad will have a role to play this season. Right-back Jack Hunt, who sustained a minor ankle injury against Millwall last weekend will be checked for fitness. Midfielder Andy Reid and striker Matty Fryatt are out with groin problems, while defender Jack Hobbs will be seeking a specialistâ€™s opinion on his ankle injury. Should Pearce decide to move around his starting line-up, Dan Harding, Jamaal Lascelles, Daniel Fox, Ben Osborn and Jamie Paterson are available.
The third round clash between Spurs and Reds is poised to be an exciting one. Itâ€™s to be seen if Spursâ€™ new signings prove their mettle, and how confidently Reds play against a Premier League team.