Tottenham v Southampton: Stats point to goals at both ends
Two sides who seem well up for the competition meet on Wednesday night and the historical stats and logic suggest we'll get goals at both ends, says Jamie Pacheco...
Tottenham v Southampton Wednesday February 5, 19:45 TV: live on BT Sport 1
Mourinho showing the FA Cup plenty of respect
Tottenham's win over Manchester City in the league on Sunday looked great on paper and there are few things Jose Mourinho likes more in life than getting one over his old rival Pep Guardiola.
But to say he got the rub of the green, is putting it mildly. City had the lion's share of possession, missed a penalty and had a man sent off. They can also thank Hugo Lloris not just for the penalty save but a couple of other fine saves that a lesser keeper may not have kept out.
One thing is for sure: Jose Mourinho will feel this is a competition worth taking seriously. He loves winning silverware, whatever type it is, and with the likes of Liverpool not taking the competition seriously at all, he'll believe they can go all the way.
So expect him to field a strong side here with the scorer of the opening goal, Steven Bergwijn, likely to play some sort of part again provided he is over whatever discomfort he was feeling when leaving the pitch midway through the second half.
Ings needs to rediscover his touch
If you're only as good as your last game, then Southampton aren't particularly good at all. But then we remember it was against the invincible team that is Liverpool, that they got hammered 4-0.
And 'hammered' is perhaps the wrong word anyway. It was only really in the last 15 minutes or so that Liverpool really had them under the cosh and they'd been somewhat competitive up to that point.
Like Spurs, they'll be looking to go as far as possible in the FA Cup with relegation pretty unlikely after the excellent run they went on between late December and mid-January.
Danny Ings was scoring for fun over the Christmas period but is going through something of a goal drought at the moment by his standards. The fact he was hooked after 70 minutes against Liverpool would suggest he's likely to start here and a return to goalscoring ways would be a huge boost to the side because he's very much their main man.
Swerve the match winner market
Spurs are 1.73 and you can just about make a case for that price. Spurs have looked better of late, are on an unbeaten run of five games across league and FA Cup games made up of three wins and two draws and will be on a high after beating City at the weekend. They also enjoy playing the Saints at home, having won their last four against them in north London.
But the visitors have been good of late. And it was only a month ago that they beat Spurs 1-0 at home in the league before putting in a very good account of themselves in drawing with this lot in the FA Cup the first time round just over a week ago.
So Spurs should probably win but I'm not sure that odds-on quote can be described as value.
Rock solid stats stats on 'yes' for both to score
If you want to look for a pattern in results between these two over the past few years, look no further than the 'yes' option on the 'both teams to score' market.
It's happened in nine of the last 10 matches played between them, the odd one out being that recent 1-0 win in the league for the Saints. Not that odds-compilers are oblivious to this. They make 'yes' 1.80 but I'm not sure that's short enough.
You'd certainly think the hosts will score and I'm not sure the time has come where I fully trust this Spurs' defence yet. Hugo Lloris (who might not even play) has improved things after coming back from injury but Serge Aurier always looks likely to make a silly mistake (he gave away the penalty at the weekend) and they haven't really gelled all season at the back.
For me, it's the stand-out bet of the match.
Extra-time or penalties could be Spurs' route
Football can't always be solely about the stats though and my gut instinct tells me there's a good chance this could be a draw at full-time with Spurs, benefiting from better options off the bench, can come good eventually.
That makes Spurs to win in extra-time (15/2) and even the hosts to win on penalties (10/1) betting options worthy of interest.