Ange drops Kulusevski in 4 changes for predicted Spurs lineup vs Burnley

    It’s been a season of real ups and downs for Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League this year.

    New boss Ange Postecoglou led them to a seriously impressive ten-game unbeaten streak at the start of the campaign, but his side have lost four games on the bounce ahead of the match against Burnley.

    Now, in the Lilywhites’ defence, they have come up against Newcastle United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool in those games.

    However, there will be no excuse if they drop more points at home to the Clarets, especially with Champions League qualification still a faint possibility.

    With that in mind, the former Celtic boss is likely to alter his team somewhat in order to help them rediscover their winning ways, and so here are the four changes he could make from the side that lost at Anfield on Sunday.


    GK – Guglielmo Vicario

    Tottenham goalkeeper Guglielmo Vicario-2

    The first name on the teamsheet and the man between the sticks will come as no surprise, as summer signing Guglielmo Vicario has generally been great this year, and he’s started 100% of league games thus far.

    Being outmuscled by opposing players on set-pieces is still a concern, but the Italian’s shot-stopping has been good enough to negate that drawback, and six clean sheets in his first campaign isn’t too bad either.


    RB – Pedro Porro

    Tottenham defender Pedro Porro

    Keeping his place on the right of the back four is 24-year-old Spaniard Pedro Porro.

    The three-capped international has started 91% of league games this season, and in his 32 appearances thus far, he’s scored one goal and provided seven assists.


    CB – Cristian Romero

    Tottenham defender Cristian Romero

    Starting alongside the Spaniard will be World Cup winner and fan favourite Cristian Romero.

    The Argentinian centre-back is often described as reckless, but his immense passion is what helps to set him apart from other players, and aside from a few moments here and there, he’s been relatively reliable this season, picking up just six yellow cards and one red in 31 games.

    Moreover, he’s looked to be more of a goal threat in recent games and probably should have had more than one against Arsenal a couple of weeks ago.


    CB – Micky van de Ven

    Micky van de Ven celebrates for Tottenham

    His defensive partner, Micky van de Ven, will be alongside Romero.

    Despite arriving from Wolfsburg in the summer as a relative unknown to most Premier League fans, the Dutch centre-back has quickly built a reputation for himself as one of the best in the division, in no small part thanks to his seriously rapid pace.

    The 23-year-old officially became the quickest player in Premier League history in February when he registered a top speed of 37.38 km/h against Brentford.


    LB – Oliver Skipp

    Oliver Skipp in action for Tottenham

    Now, the fans probably won’t be thrilled with this one, but given the lack of genuine options, bar continuing with Emerson Royal, Oliver Skipp may have to be the makeshift solution at left-back, having replaced the Brazilian on the hour mark last time out.

    Postecoglou has hinted that could now be a more permanent change, having admitted that Emerson is “not really a left-back” – something which has been seen amid a torrid spell in recent weeks for the former Barcelona man, earning a 3/10 for his shocking display against Liverpool and a 4/10 for his showing against Chelsea.

    It’s far from ideal, but it’s hard to see Skipp doing much worse?


    CM – Yves Bissouma

    Yves Bissouma.

    The first midfielder in the team is Yves Bissouma, who, in spite of his lacklustre form this year, keeps his place in the starting lineup.

    The former Brighton & Hove Albion star has undoubtedly been disappointing this season, but against Liverpool, he wasn’t the worst central midfielder, and if Postecoglou wants to get the Mali international back to his best, he’s going to have to play games.


    CM – Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg

    Tottenham midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg.

    The second change to the team – after Skipp’s introduction – comes in central midfield.

    After a poor showing from Pape Matar Sarr and Rodrigo Bentancur on Sunday, for which they both received 5/10 ratings from’s Rob Guest, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg should start.

    The Dane might not be the most exciting player, but he can help add a bit more stability to the base of the Lilywhite’s midfield.

    According to FBref, he ranks in the top 10% of midfielders in Europe’s top five leagues for interceptions and clearances per 90, which will be necessary considering the player starting ahead of him on the pitch.


    AM – James Maddison

    James Maddison for Tottenham

    The third change to the team sees James Maddison come in to start as the most attacking of Spurs’ three midfielders.

    The Englishman hasn’t been in the best of form since his return from injury, scoring just once and providing two assists in 15 games, but when he came off the bench on Sunday, he looked lively.

    He took three shots – one of which was blocked – completed two long balls and produced an expected goals figure of 0.20 in just 29 minutes.

    Moreover, it’s similar to the Bissouma situation: If Postecoglou wants to get the best out of the “incredible” ace, as described by talent scout Jacek Kulig, he’s going to have to play him more often, and a game against relegation-threatened Burnley might be the perfect opportunity to start him.


    RW – Brennan Johnson

    Brennan Johnson for Tottenham-1

    There is another change on the right, as Brennan Johnson comes over from the left wing to take Dejan Kulusevski‘s place.

    The Swedish international is an incredibly talented winger, but he didn’t show that against Liverpool, putting in a 4/10 display in which he failed to take even a single shot and produced a shockingly low expected assists figure of just 0.01.

    Meanwhile, Johnson managed to nab himself an assist, and while he wasn’t miles better, his move to the right allows Ange to make another change in the attack.


    ST – Richarlison

    Tottenham forward Richarlison.

    The fourth and final personnel change comes at the sharp end of the pitch, as Richarlison comes into the side and starts as the number nine.

    The “fantastic” Brazilian, as described by Postecoglou, has had something of an underrated season this year, scoring 12 goals and providing four assists in 1737 minutes of first-team football, meaning he is averaging a goal involvement every 108 minutes.

    He might not be a world-class striker, but he’s proven this season that, when given the chance, he can be deadly.


    LW – Son Heung-min


    The final position in the lineup brings with it the last change, albeit a positional one, as club captain Son Heung-min moves back out to the left wing to make space for Richarlison.

    The South Korean star might not be quite as effective out on the wing as he used to be, but in 11 appearances there this season, he has scored three goals and provided four assists, meaning he is averaging a goal involvement every 1.5 games out on the left.

    Predicted Tottenham Hotspur lineup vs Burnley in full: GK – Vicario, RB – Porro, CB – Romero, CB – Van de Ven, LB – Royal; CM – Hojbjerg, CM – Bissouma, AM – Maddison; RW – Johnson, ST – Richarlison, LW – Son

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