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Premier League Preview: Tottenham Hotspur vs. Chelsea

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  • Chelsea leads all-time 66W-40D-50L
  • Blues last won at WHL in 2012
  • Chelsea set for PL record with win

Chelsea is aiming for another bit of Premier League history when it heads to White Hart Lane for a Top Four tilt with Tottenham Hotspur (Watch Live at 3 p.m. EDT Wednesday on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

A win over Spurs would be the 14th straight Premier League win for Chelsea, breaking the record it shares with Arsenal. Chelsea already has the most consecutive wins in a single season, as Arsenal’s run extended over a summer.

Spurs have quietly won four-straight themselves after a 1-0 setback at Manchester United on Dec. 11. The last two were twin 4-1 road wins, and Tottenham hasn’t lost a Premier League match at home this season.

It’s difficult to overstate the significance of this date at White Hart Lane. Spurs can climb back into the Top Four. Chelsea has a shot at a league first. Bring it on.

What they’re saying

Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino on Chelsea’s run at history““We cannot be focused on that – focus on us, try to improve our game and try to be better than them. All that happens afterwards is not our problem, Chelsea is not our problem – we need to be focused on Tottenham, try to show that we are better than them and deserve the victory in the end. I think we are arriving at the game in a very good moment for us.”

Conte on the record run“The record, I repeat, is a great achievement above all because after these 13 wins in a row we took 39 points. The other situations are not important for us. This type of game gives you great motivation. Now every team wants to stop our run, not only Tottenham.”

Prediction

It sounds odd to say in the first week of January, but a loss would be it for Spurs’ title hopes. The desperation is firmly in their camp, and having the opportunity to pass Arsenal in the table will be appealing as well. Chelsea is shooting for history, but Conte won’t have the club playing out of its comfort zone. The attacking prowess of both sides makes 0-0 feel unlikely, so we’ll peg both sides to score and Chelsea to just miss history. 1-1.

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Coutinho rocket helps LFC to PL Asia Trophy (video)

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Goals from Mohamed Salah and Philippe Coutinho helped Liverpool come back from an early deficit to win the PL Asia Trophy on Saturday in Hong Kong.

Islam Slimani gave Leicester City an early lead in front of a heavy pro-Liverpool crowd at Hong Kong Stadium, but Coutinho delivered the goods on both goals in a 2-1 win.

The tournament win is Liverpool’s first in its second trip to the PL Asia Trophy Final.

[ EXCLUSIVE: Strootman talks Roma w/ PST ]

First he crossed for Salah to head home, and then he scored the above goal by cutting in from the left and lashing a shot past a flailing Kasper Schmeichel.

We’ve seen this one before from Coutinho, just not on this particular continent. The Brazilian remains a Barcelona target, but looks prepared for the season in whatever land he sets foot.

Transfer rumor roundup: Latest on Alexis, Neymar to PSG; Van Dijk

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Neymar and Alexis Sanchez to Paris? Brazil and Chile’s finest living as one? Reunited and it feels so French?

The latter’s talents will see Arsenal’s resolve tested by a $46 million bid, according to Sky Sports, though Gunners manager Arsene Wenger has been adamant that Sanchez will not be sold this summer.

Reports circled last year that Arsenal was prepared to offer Sanchez and Mesut Ozil record deals to stay at the club, though PSG has reportedly met with Sanchez and his agent with ideas of incredible $650,000 per week wages at the Parc des Princes.

[ EXCLUSIVE: Strootman talks Roma w/ PST ]

A source also told Sky Sports that it would take “a miracle” for Neymar to remain at Barcelona, so that Sanchez/Edinson Cavani/Neymar trident could be coming to a theater near you.


Southampton manager Mauricio Pellegrino is hopeful of convincing Virgil Van Dijk to stay at St. Mary’s, but for now he’s been forced to ask the defender to take time away from the club.

Van Dijk, hopeful to engineer a move to a UEFA Champions League club, has not been in the preferred mental state for Pellegrino.

“When I was talking with him, the boy said that he is not available to play because he wants to leave. I need to work with a player that works at 100 percent to defend Southampton. This is the decision. I had to say: ‘OK, if you don’t want to be involved because you don’t feel OK, you have to train alone until this period of time.'”

Liverpool publicly ended their interest in Van Dijk following Southampton complaints, and the club maintains it will not sell the influential center back.


West Ham’s loan move for Joe Hart could see both of its 2016-17 goalkeepers leaving the London Stadium. Multiple reports say Darren Randolph could be off to Middlesbrough, with Adrian also heading to the Northeast to play for countryman Rafa Benitez at Newcastle.

Must watch Milivojevic free kick leads Palace past WBA (video)

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Goals from Luka Milivojevic and Bakary Sako led Crystal Palace to a 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion in the third place game of the PL Asia Trophy.

Palace had lost 2-0 to Liverpool in its semifinal, while West Brom fell to Leicester City in penalty kicks after trading goals over 90 minutes.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]  

Milivojevic’s free kick, won by Wilfried Zaha, was super. Whipped in with force and a wicked curl, Baggies keeper Ben Foster didn’t have a chance to reach it with his dive.

Sako created his goal with a darting move off a long dribble, though it needed a pair of deflections to get behind Foster.

The Baggies had their chances, and Julian Speroni made an outstanding save on Matty Phillips late in the match.

STREAM LIVE: Liverpool-Leicester duel for PL Asia Trophy

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Goals from Bakary Sako and Luka Milivojevic spearheaded Crystal Palace’s 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion in the PL Asia Trophy third place game, and now Liverpool and Leicester City tangle for the title.

The final will be staged at 8:30 a.m. ET, when Liverpool will hope to build on a 2-0 semifinal win paced by Divock Origi and Dominic Solanke goals.

[ LIVE: Stream PL Asia Trophy here ]  

West Brom lost to Leicester City in its semifinal when youngster Sam Field missed the side’s seventh attempt in penalty kicks. Jay Rodriguez scored the Baggies goal in regulation of a 1-1 draw.

Here are the lineups for Leicester City and Liverpool: