Tottenham returns to scene of title collapse after setback
LONDON, England (AP):
Back at the scene of last season's Premier League title collapse, Tottenham will be picking up the pieces from a fresh disintegration.
After spending five years trying to muscle their way back into the Champions League, Tottenham are timidly exiting from the group stage, stalling the progress of an ambitious manager and his relatively young squad.
And for the first time since taking charge of Tottenham in 2014, Mauricio Pochettino's decision-making is coming under scrutiny ahead of today's trip across London to Chelsea.
Playing in the European Cup for only the third time in their history was the consolation for Tottenham after missing out on a first English title since 1961.
Losing at Monaco on Tuesday left Tottenham with only one win from five Champions League games, including two losses at their temporary European home at Wembley Stadium.
Chelsea are helped by having a season out of Europe at the start of Antonio Conte's reign.
A run of five straight losses has sent Crystal Palace sliding to a point above the relegation zone.
Today's opposition is faring little better. Bob Bradley is winless in five games since taking charge of Swansea, who have fallen to last place while collecting two points.
"The players know me by now," Bradley said. "I will stand by them and stick up for them, but they also know I expect a lot."
Leicester are flying high in the Champions League as the only English team at the top of their group. Back in the domestic league, it's a different picture.
The defending champions are two points above the relegation zone after losing their last two games, only a place and a point above next opponent Middlesbrough.
Leicester midfielder Danny Drinkwater will start a three-game suspension after accepting an English Football Association charge of violent conduct for an elbow on Watford midfielder Valon Behrami in last weekend's game. It leaves Andy King and Daniel Amartey as Leicester's only fit senior central midfielders.