Southampton vs. Tottenham Odds, Pick, Prediction: Spurs on Verge of Offensive Breakout

Southampton vs. Tottenham Odds, Pick, Prediction: Spurs on Verge of Offensive Breakout article feature image
Credit:

Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images. Pictured: Harry Kane

  • The Tottenham vs. Southampton line has moved a bit this morning, as Spurs have gone from +110 to +115 on the three-way line for Tuesday's match.
  • Anthony Dabbundo is targeting the over, however, as he believes Tottenham's attack is on the verge of a breakout given the quality chances its created and its expected goals numbers.
  • Get his full Tottenham vs. Southampton pick and preview below.

Southampton vs. Spurs Odds

Southampton Odds +250
Spurs Odds +115
Draw +240
Over/Under 2.5 (-115 / -105)
Day | Time Tuesday | 10 a.m. ET
How To Watch NBCSN | fuboTV
Odds updated Tuesday at 8:40 a.m. ET (DraftKings). Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.

Tottenham Hotspur is one of the Premier League’s hottest teams entering Tuesday’s road trip to Southampton as Spurs have won five consecutive league matches under new manager Antonio Conte.

Spurs have had the benefit of playing five straight at home due to COVID-19 and weather cancellations, but they’ve also created more chances than all but Manchester City and Liverpool since Conte joined the club in November, six matches ago.

Now they’ll face a tricky test on the road against Southampton, a team fresh off a thrilling 3-2 win on the road against West Ham. The Saints now have quite a bit of cushion over the teams fighting in the relegation places and continue to be due for some positive attacking regression.

While Tottenham’s attack has significantly improved and should be able to create plenty of chances, the defense remains untested in recent matches and could be vulnerable away from home.

Southampton Finally Living Up To Advanced Numbers

The Saints managed three goals on just 1.3 xG in their win against West Ham on Sunday, scoring off of a penalty, a set piece and a shot from the edge of the penalty area. Southampton was due for plenty of positive finishing regression following a start to the season that saw only Norwich underperform xG for numbers by more goals than the Saints.

In the last two matches — including the win on Sunday and the draw against Palace before Christmas — the Saints have scored five goals from two expected goals. This could be a sign of Southampton entering a good finishing run, and the next opponent for them is a Spurs defense that’s been a bit overrated in this recent run.

Overall, the Saints rank ninth in non-penalty xG per 90, eighth in shots per match and create a good amount of big scoring chances. Southampton is only the second above-average attack (by xG created this season) that Spurs will have faced under Conte, and there’s looming signs of defensive regression coming for Tottenham.

Southampton has the added bonus of always being a good team on set pieces because of James Ward-Prowse, who missed a large stretch of games when the Saints struggled offensively. But the team has made significant improvements on set pieces and generally in attack since he’s been in the lineup.

The Saints have the seventh-best attack by xG per 90 created in 11-on-11 games since October began.

Spurs’ Play Has Improved Under Conte

When you look at Spurs xG created per game, there’s a clear line of demarcation that begins after Conte took the job. In just six matches, Conte has returned Spurs to chance creation levels that hadn’t been seen since the Mauricio Pochettino era.

Spurs have seen a lot of love in the betting market in the lead up to nearly each of their last six matches since Conte took the job, and the performances have matched the results. In fact, Spurs still have some attacking regression coming if Harry Kane improves his finishing and returns to being a consistently above xG finisher.

For his entire career, Kane has over-performed xG marginally and is one of the best finishers in the world. His goals per shot number have been between 0.14 and 0.22 every year since he joined Spurs.

This year, Kane is all the way down at 0.07 goals per shot, less than half of his career average. Kane has three league goals from 6.3 xG, a sign he’s on the verge of breaking out with a hot goal-scoring run. He’s now scored in two consecutive matches and Spurs have only scored 1.9 xG per 90 under Conte despite 2.2 xG per 90 created.

Much in the same way Spurs have positive attacking regression coming and have been the third best attack in the league under Conte, the defense has been a bit fortunate.

The quality of competition has not been great: home games against Norwich, Brentford and Crystal Palace. Games against a depleted Everton and Leeds squad help, too. Despite this, Tottenham is allowing 0.96 xGA per 90 under Conte but has only conceded three goals in six matches.

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Betting Analysis & Pick

Spurs are a touch overvalued on the three-way moneyline based on recent form, where they’ve been the clear fourth-best team in the PL since Conte arrived. This will be a more significant test for the Spurs’ defense away from home, as Tottenham’s defense has still be conceding a decent number of chances despite the improvements.

Tottenham’s attack is on the verge of a breakout given the quality of chances created and not scored recently, and the expected finishing improvement of Kane. Despite this, there remains questions about Tottenham’s defensive personnel and ability to cope with a team that will apply a lot of pressure as the Saints will.

My projection for this game has 2.74 goals scored and I’m happy to play over 2.5 at -120 or better. Spurs won’t get to play up a man for an hour and coast like they did vs. Palace on Sunday. And while Spurs are the more likely winner and should create chances against Southampton’s leaky defense that has allowed the third most big scoring chances in the entire league, Spurs remain vulnerable to concede defensively.

Pick: Over 2.5 (-115)

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