By Ian S. Palmer
English Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur will pay a visit to Germany this Thursday, March 10 to take on Borussia Dortmund of the Bundesliga in a Europa League round-of-16 match. This is the first fixture of a two legged, home-and-away series. Tottenham enters the game after drawing 2-2 at home against Arsenal in the Premier League last weekend while Dortmund played to a 0-0 draw with league-leading Bayern Munich. This will be the first-ever meeting between Tottenham and Dortmund in a competitive European competition. The two sides have met four times in the past in friendlies, with Spurs winning three of the clashes.
- Pinnacle currently lists Dortmund as the favorites in this game at -177 with Tottenham +533 and a draw at +338
Dortmund has been hot in their six home European fixtures this season with five wins and a loss with 20 goals scored. They’re lone defeat came to PAOK after they had already qualified for the round-of-16 stage. The German club has met English opponents 19 times competitively in the past with nine wins, four draws and six losses. They have five wins, three draws and one loss at home with three victories, a draw and five defeats on English soil. Dortmund’s’ hottest scorers at the moment are Emerick Aubameyang and Marco Reus.
The German team has won seven of their past eight contests with the lone draw coming against Bayern Munich last weekend. Dortmund has also recorded eight clean sheets in their past 10 fixtures and sit in second place in the German league, just five points behind Bayern Munich. Tottenham is challenging for their first English league crown since 1961 and are also in second place in their domestic league, five points back of Leicester City. The team has been beaten just once in Europe this season to go along with five wins and two draws. Their only defeat came at the hands of Belgian side Anderlecht on the road during the group stage.
Tottenham has played 16 times against German clubs in the past in European tournaments and have a record of nine wins, two draws and five losses. They’ve won three times in Germany while drawing once and losing five. At home at White Hart Lane in London, Spurs have gone unbeaten with six victories and a draw. Their biggest scoring threat at the moment is young English international striker Harry Kane. Spurs’ biggest-ever loss in a European competition took place in Germany where they were hammered 8-0 at the hands of FC Koln during the Intertoto Cup event in 1995.
Dortmund beat Portuguese club Porto in the round-of-16 to advance to this stage while Spurs downed Fiorentina of the Italian Serie A. Tottenham has a relatively healthy squad to choose from as the only injuries listed are to Danny Rose, Jan Vertonghen and Clinton N’Jie. Dortmund may be without the services of Felix Passlack, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Hendrik Bonmann.
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