Betting: Pitch-perfect Tottenham to give Poch FA Cup progression

 
Ben Cleminson
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Christian Eriksen's free-kick helped Tottenham to a 2-2 draw with Juventus on Tuesday (Source: Getty)

After winning at the 90,000-seater Wembley last weekend, and playing at the shiny new Juventus Stadium on Tuesday, Tottenham face a very different proposition as they take on Rochdale at Spotland in the FA Cup on Sunday.

Work has been going on round the clock to get the 10,000 capacity ground ready for the arrival of one of England’s most glamourous sides, which has included completely relaying a pitch that was so bad it saw Dale’s chief executive apologise to Millwall after their fourth-round replay victory last week.

That game was the first at Spotland in over a month after heavy rain left the ground unfit for purpose, and how the newly laid turf will play is anyone’s guess.

Those hopeful of an upset won’t mind – as any FA Cup traditionalist knows, a dodgy pitch is the ultimate leveller.

Read more: Pochettino applauds Spurs maturity after fightback in Turin

Rochdale might need all the help they can get, given Tottenham’s impressive run of form.

Spurs are unbeaten in 13 in all competitions, and followed up a dominant north London derby victory over Arsenal with a battling come-from-behind draw against Juventus in the Champions League midweek.

Spurs are fighting on a number of fronts, but with Mauricio Pochettino keen to convert the promise shown by his side into tangible silverware, he’s sure to take this one seriously.

Rochdale, meanwhile, sit bottom of League One – though with plenty of games in hand after some rain-enforced abandonments.

They have saved their best form for the cup, however, and this money-spinning tie shown live on TV should go some way towards paying back for the cost of that new pitch.

In their 111-year history, the Dale have never reached higher than their current third tier, and this is the first time they have ever played Tottenham.

Read more: Swans thrash Notts County as Millwall miss out on Spurs tie

They’ll certainly be up for it – even if they do face fellow relegation strugglers MK Dons on Wednesday.

Spurs are as short as 1/8 to win this one, so it may be worth sniffing out some value elsewhere.

They finish stronger than they start – being ahead in at half-time in just two of their last seven games, and on a tricky pitch, Rochdale could make their lives difficult.

Back Draw HT Tottenham FT at 3/1 with Grosvenorsport.com.

Pointers

Draw HT Tottenham FT - 3/1 (Grosvenorsport.com)

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