Fiorentina - Tottenham Hotspur Preview: Spurs looking for revenge in last 32 rematch

Tottenham Hotspur travel to Italy to play Fiorentina in the last 32 first leg of the Europa League.

Fiorentina - Tottenham Hotspur Preview: Spurs looking for revenge in last 32 rematch
(photo: vavel)

Tottenham Hotspur resume their Europa League campaign on Thursday night, as they travel to Fiorentina for their first leg of their last 32 tie.

An old foe

This tie is in fact a rematch for Spurs from exactly this time last year when they took on Fiorentina in the Europa League last 32 in 2015. On this occasion, things did not go well for Mauricio Pochettino's side as they fell 3-1 on aggerate to the Italian side, with the damage done after an away defeat where Mario Gomez and Mohamed Salah goals saw La Viola beat them 2-0.

Riding high

Spurs are certainly feeling good about themselves coming into this game, as they sit second in the Premier League and are just two points behind Leicester City after grabbing a huge 2-1 away win against Manchester City on Sunday - Christian Eriksen grabbing a late winner.

Eriksen and Kane celebrate the winning goal against City (photo: getty)
Eriksen and Kane celebrate the winning goal against City (photo: getty)

Therefore, bearing in mind Spurs' fantastic season in the league so far, and the fact they're still in the FA Cup, this competiton may now appear like an unwanted distraction for Tottenham, who don't have the biggest of squads compared to other top teams. Although, winning this tournament would also give them their aim of Champions League football.

Opponents Fiorentina are managed by a man who knows a lot about the English game in the form of ex Swansea City and Queens Park Rangers boss Paulo Sousa. The Serie A outfit currently sit third in Italy, eight points off leaders Juventus pace and finished second in their group behind another one of Sousa's former clubs Basel.

Team news

A big miss for Tottenham is the fact first choice Hugo Lloris is unavailable with a shoulder problem, although he may have been rested for Michel Vorm anyway.

Apart from this Spurs are at full strength, with Harry Kane fit to play despite sustaining a knock at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.

The only absentee for Fiorentina is midfielder Milan Badelj, who is out with a thigh issue.

Stats

Fiorentina are unbeaten in four European games against English opposition with two of those against Spurs last year.

Spurs have won just four of their 13 European meetings with Italian sides, only one of them has come away from home.

Heung-Min Son is second in assists with four and Erik Lamela is second in scoring with five in this season's Europa League.