Predicted Spurs XI, team and injury news vs Southampton

Tottenham Hotspur finally return to Premier League action this afternoon as they welcome Southampton to north London to kickstart the 2022/23 campaign.

Lilywhites boss Antonio Conte will be looking to get off to the best possible start after he steered Spurs back into the Champions League last season with a fourth-place finish, snatching it late from arch-rivals Arsenal’s grasp.

Spurs fans, what is your prediction for today’s game?

Spurs win!

Spurs win!

draw…

draw...

Saints win!

Saints win!

Backed in the transfer market with six new summer signings, the Italian will have been delighted with his pre-season preparations but it remains to be seen what sort of side he’ll select this weekend.

Here’s the XI we’re predicting for today’s encounter…

In goal, club captain Hugo Lloris is likely to resume his no.1 duties as Fraser Forster, signed on a free from today’s opponents, has only been brought in as a backup.

Conte will surely remain with his wing-back system, so we’re expecting a back three involving Eric Dier and Cristian Romero, whilst the third spot is a little less clear. Ben Davies missed some of pre-season with injury, so summer loan signing Clement Lenglet could get the nod.

The French centre-back could be joined by one more new arrival in the form of Ivan Perisic, who is expected to become Conte’s first choice left wing-back this season.

Meanwhile, on the other flank, the Italian head coach has a big call to make as he has as many as three options. Emerson Royal could be chosen ahead of Matt Doherty and £15m signing Djed Spence.

In midfield, Spurs won’t have the services of the injured Oliver Skipp and another summer signing, Yves Bissouma, is a big doubt, so the reigns are likely to go to Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Rodrigo Bentancur.

Further up the pitch, the £60m acquisition of Richarlison isn’t likely to change much as Conte will surely run with the free-flowing and exciting front three of Heung-min Son, Dejan Kulusevski and Harry Kane.

Predicted Spurs XI (3-4-3): Lloris; Lenglet, Dier, Romero; Perisic, Hojbjerg, Bentancur, Emerson; Son, Kulusevski, Kane

AND in other news, Spurs deal “freak” injury blow ahead of Premier League opener…

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