Andre Villas Boas made it clear before the Europa League began his desire to get his hands on the trophy again. Tonight brings a game of significant importance for AVB's men against Maribor. The Slovenian side matched Tottenham in Slovenia as the game ended 1-1, leaving Tottenham with 3 points from 3 games. The final group games and in particular, the two home matches, the final leg of the Group Stage calls for victories. Tottenham did perhaps lack in their opening three matches, in the opening group game neither side could find a breakthrough and it ended 0-0. Tottenham could have nicked it, with the chances but Lazio weren't a million miles away from winning it. In the second game, Tottenham missed a huge opportunity, Panathinaikos held no threat to Tottenham and it was perhaps Tottenham's naivety and failure to close the game out that cost them. Against Maribor they tried to create constant danger, but were lacklustre in the final third as Jermaine Defoe became isolated.
Maribor will come as a threat to Tottenham tonight, Robert Beric, the scorer of the goal in Maribor should be watched. His nimble wing work, opened up an opportunity which he took, of exploiting the Tottenham backline. Furthermore, Marcos Tavares, Maribor's Brazillian forward, will possess a real threat, despite not making a real mark on the opening game. His pace and skill was clear to see and it could prosper if Maribor can counter attack effectively.
One thing that will be intresting is whether AVB selects Jermaine Defoe, the on-form striker was omitted when they were losing 1-0 to Wigan at the weekend. If AVB does have any sense in him, he'll know that someone so clinical as Defoe will provide a goal threat to Maribor. Falque could feature, the Spaniard is enjoying a chance to crack the first team, in Slovenia, he opened up Maribor and gave the game life when perhaps it was becoming a legless affair.
A win tonight is desperately needed for Tottenham, Maribor may be resilient so perhaps all out attack it the call of the day.