Tottenham and Cardiff City supporters are eagerly anticipating the meeting between the two sides in the Premier League this weekend, with both heading into the encounter off the back of contrasting recent results.
Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs comfortably beat Huddersfield Town 2-0 last weekend to record a second successive Premier League victory, thus bouncing back admirably from their run of three straight defeats at the start of September.
Yet things aren’t going so well for Neil Warnock’s Bluebirds, who suffered a 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Burnley on Sunday to go down for a fifth time in the league this season, leaving them with just two points from their opening seven league matches.
Yet both teams will be hoping to improve as the season wears on given the options both managers have in the attacking third of the pitch, with Warnock likely hoping for Junior Hoilett to produce the goods, while Lucas Moura is someone Pochettino may seek to rely on as the campaign progresses.
And it’s messrs Hoilett and Moura which are of particular interest, so let’s take a look at how the two compare…
Canada international Hoilett made the move to the Cardiff City Stadium back in October 2016, which came just days after Warnock replaced Paul Trollope as the new Bluebirds chief.
And having also played under the Englishman during their respective times at Queens Park Rangers, Warnock knew exactly what he was going to get from the 28-year-old, and so it has proved with the winger netting 13 goals and laying on 17 assists in 88 appearances for the club.
And with nine goals and 11 assists coming in their run to second place in the Championship last season, it’s clear that the Canadian played a vital part in their ascent to the top-flight, although he has so far failed to have the necessary impact in the Premier League.
Hoilett has started five of their seven league games but has so far failed to score a goal or register an assist, and if Cardiff are to indeed stay up this term, Warnock will clearly need more from the 28-year-old as the season progresses.
TT Verdict: B
Lucas Moura made the move to Tottenham back in January after five years at French giants Paris Saint-Germain, where he won four successive Ligue 1 titles.
Yet the Brazil international struggled to make an impact at Spurs in the second half of last season to call into question Pochettino’s decision to land the 26-year-old, although he has proven so far this term exactly why Tottenham parted with £25 million to land the winger.
Moura has enjoyed a fine first few months of the season in scoring three goals in seven Premier League appearances for the North Londoners, two of which coming in their momentous victory at Manchester United back in August.
Yes, things have since gone a little bit quiet for the Brazilian star, but there is little doubting that he will play a key part in what success Tottenham have both domestically and indeed in Europe this season.
TT Verdict: A
Clearly, both of these attackers will be crucial to their respective sides this season, with Cardiff in need of Hoilett’s brilliance if they are to avoid relegation, while Pochettino will call upon Moura to produce the goods for his trophy-chasing Tottenham.
28-year-old Hoilett deserves great credit for again producing the goods under Warnock in the Championship last season, but early indications suggest that a return to the Premier League may be a step too far for the Canadian, and indeed Cardiff as a whole.
Thus, the Warnock favourite is not a patch on Spurs’ increasingly influential Moura, whose start to the season suggests bigger and better things are to come from the 26-year-old in North London.
Cardiff and Tottenham fans… what do you think? Let us know!
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