Tottenham Hotspur will use their League Cup fixture against Nottingham Forest to prepare for the north London derby this weekend, after a big disappointment against West Brom.
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino could not run out victorious for the second time of the week after losing 1-0 to West Brom on home turf and a flat 0-0 result to Partizan in Serbia, in a midweek Europa League fixture.
As Forest travel to White Hart Lane on Tuesday night, Pochettino will have the opportunity to see if he has fixed what went wrong against West Brom last weekend, but Spurs will have to be aware of the Championship leaders' threat as they netted in 15 of their last 16 trips to the Lane.
Spurs hope to have their best match of the season so far this weekend when they meet a weakened Arsenal team, with Mathieu Debouchy out for three months.
The Gunners have won their last three meetings against Tottenham including two Premier League fixtures - winning 1-0 at home and away - and a 2-0 victory in a FA Cup last campaign.
Although Pochettino started the season on the positive foot with Spurs by only losing two of their first five Premier League matches, including a 3-0 loss to Liverpool at home, the Argentine is still looking to settle his tactics and philosophy at the club after realising it’s not quite what is expecting from his team yet.
More to improve
Spurs attacking display has massively improved since Pochettino's arrival at White Hart Lane but they still need to find this final pace that they tend to find hard to apply.
The midfield area recently saw the come back of Belgian international Moussa Dembele, which has given a new lift in terms of keeping well the possession – it was probably the only good point of last weekend match.
But defensively it is not quite right yet, although having brought three new defenders Spurs defence is still easy to beat as new boys Federico Fazio and Ben Davies are not completely settled in the First-Team – which is comprehensible as it takes more than a month to really get into a new club and a new style of football.
But we could wonder where is Tottenham’s best defender Jan Vertonghen after not appearing against West Brom and with the Spurs’ captaincy that was, instead, given to Younes Kaboul – what’s going on!
Overall, Tottenham need to find this extra effort in front of the net to score more goals – they could have score many times against West Brom – and be stronger defensively especially when it comes to defend a corner ball.
Last weekend Spurs gave away too many corners where the ball could have been easily cleared back on the pitch, but the fact that they had to defend unnecessary corner balls left them under real pressure, and without the abilities to properly defend one of those [corner ball] it left West Brom win the match.
If Spurs manage to react on time and find back their winning run, they may this time finish in the top four after being so close to do so throughout the passed two years.