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Wednesday, 17 July 2019

Statistics add up for title-chasing Tottenham

Reuters , Tuesday 19 Apr 2016
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If Premier League titles were decided by statistics alone then Tottenham Hotspur would already have one hand on the trophy rather than playing catch-up to Leicester City.

Mauricio Pochettino's side lead the charts in pretty much every department apart from the all important points column where they trail Leicester by five with four games to play.

Monday's 4-0 demolition of Stoke City away from home saw striker Harry Kane move two goals clear of Leicester's Jamie Vardy in the race to win the coveted Golden Boot with 24.

As former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher said on Sky Sports, however, it is Tottenham's teamwork which has given them a chance of reeling in Leicester.

They have scored the most goals (64) in the Premier League and conceded the fewest (25).

Spurs also lead the way in shots on target (234), chances created (449) and goals from set pieces (17) while they have restricted opposing attacks to 102 attempts on target all season, again the best in the league.

Their goal difference (+39) is 11 better than the next best, which is Manchester City's.

Midfielder Dele Alli's seven assists for Kane this season makes that route to goal the most lethal in the division, ahead of the six assists Arsenal's Mesut Ozil has supplied for Olivier Giroud and the five Riyad Mahrez has set up for Vardy.

"The best thing I can say about Spurs is that they are a team," said Carragher. "Kane and Alli are superstars, two fantastic players, but this Spurs team is a team."

Carragher reckons former Southampton manager Pochettino should be praised for developing another exciting young side.

"When you pick a man of the match for Spurs it could be five or six players, everyone is playing well," he said.

"The main person who deserves credit for that is the manager, what he has created at Spurs is absolutely fantastic."

Tottenham's playmaker Christian Eriksen has also stepped up his game and his sublime assists for two goals on Monday means only Ozil has created more goals this season.

At 12.2 km the Denmark international also covers more distance per game than any other midfielder in the top flight.

All this has been achieved by Spurs with the an average age of just 24 in the starting XI -- the youngest in the top flight.

Alli, 20, typifies the energy in the Tottenham ranks.

This time last year he was playing for MK Dons in the Championship (second-tier) but Pochettino's faith in the youngster has been vindicated in spectacular fashion, so much so that he will be a key figure for England at Euro 2016. 

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