Tottenham Hotspur will travel to Russia tonight to play against Anzhi Makhachkala. The hosts have seen their side stripped of top stars this summer as wealthy owner Suleiman Kerimov’s first tactic, of purchasing players from around the world for premium prices, to try to bring success to the club, has been deemed unsustainable.
The club used to boast stars such as Samuel Eto’o who was reportedly on very high wages and has now moved onto Chelsea. However they missed their targets for the season in terms of position in the Russian league and Kerimov has jettisoned the expensive squad he assembled.
In terms of football on the pitch, Tottenham are in fine form so far this season after going the opposite way off the pitch to Anzhi and investing hefty sums on players. Their new acquisitions, although perhaps not totally immersed within the team as of yet, seem to be finding their feet well and their league form reflects that.
An away tie at a stadium that is a long distance away may nullify their good form though and prove to be a game that is very much up for grabs. Tottenham though have the strength in depth needed to be effective in Europe and should go into the game with much confidence.
Anzhi have not performed well in their last 6 games in the Russian league, drawing 4 and losing 2. For that reason, on top of the total re arranging of their squad and their sales of top players, I think they will struggle to produce a win against Spurs.