For the first time during his young tenure as Tottenham Hotspurs manager, Jose Mourinho must see that his team rebounds from a defeat.
Spurs look to do that at home Saturday, when they also try to hand Burnley a third consecutive Premier League loss.
Mourinho’s stint as Spurs manager got off to a rousing start with league victories over West Ham United and Bournemouth sandwiching a Champions League triumph over Olympiacos. However, that mini run of perfection came to an end with Wednesday’s 2-1 loss at Manchester United.
It was Mourinho’s return to Old Trafford, and one that saw his new club go down 1-0 within six minutes. Dele Alli equalised in the 39th minute, but United reclaimed the lead just after the break on Marcus Rashford’s second goal of the contest.
“We can’t start games like that and perform like that,” Alli, second on the team with five league goals, told Spurs’ official website. “Maybe it’s just a wake-up call. There have been a couple of games where we’ve started like that and got away with it and won the game, but against the top sides, we need to be better. We need to perform better. We have to pick ourselves up and learn from it.”
That opportunity comes relatively quick, and at home, where Spurs are 3-2-0 since suffering their only loss there against Newcastle United on Aug. 25. They’ve outscored Burnley 11-3 whilst going 4-1-0 at home during this Premier League series with the Clarets.
Burnley (5-3-8) won their first road contest of the campaign, 3-0 at lowly Watford on Nov. 23, but have followed by being outscored 6-1 during home defeats against Crystal Palace and Manchester City. The latter, a 4-1 thrashing at the hands of the defending champions on Tuesday.
“We will bounce back,” defender Ben Mee told Burnley’s official website. “We will get the mentality right and we’ll go again. We’ll work hard (in between games) and be right for Saturday, I’m sure.”
Burnley would certainly get a boost if Ashley Barnes, tied for the team lead with six Premier League goals, is fit for this contest. The talented forward did not start against Man City due to a groin injury, but came on as a 59th-minute substitute.
“Barnesy is still getting on with it,” manager Sean Dyche told Burnley’s official website. “His groin is still a bit sore. More of an over-use situation. But, he has a strong chance.”
Barnes has three goals over eight Premier League games against Spurs, including the 83rd-minute winner in a 2-1 home triumph over Tottenham on Feb. 23.