Marine v Tottenham: Brave hosts to be outclassed

Jose Mourinho
Spurs boss Jose Mourinho has won the FA Cup with Chelsea and launches Spurs' bid for another Wembley final at Marine on Sunday

Marine have won seven ties and produced several shocks just to get to the third round of the FA Cup, but Kevin Hatchard believes they'll be soundly beaten by Jose Mourinho's Tottenham.

"With all due respect and credit to Marine, Tottenham are facing a side from the eighth tier of English football, and should win this with plenty of room to spare."

Back Tottenham to lead at HT and FT and Over 4.5 Goals at 1.845/6 on the Same Game Multi

Marine v Tottenham
Sunday 10 January, 17:00
Live on BBC One

Magic Marine have earned moment in the spotlight

It's a cup cliché, but the professions of some of the Marine players add to the lustre of their clash with Tottenham. There are teachers, NHS workers and a binman, as well as some ex-pros. Defender David Raven has faced Tottenham before in a League Cup quarter-final, when he was a youngster at Liverpool. The 35-year-old full-back went on to play for a host of clubs including Carlisle and Inverness.

This is surely the biggest game in Marine's 127-year history, and it is truly remarkable that they have got this far. They ply their trade in Division One North West of the Northern Premier League, the eighth tier of English football. That means that this tie against Spurs represents the biggest gulf between clubs the FA Cup has ever seen in its long and storied history. This isn't just David v Goliath, this is David v Goliath on steroids.

Marine have already won seven ties to get this far, and they have come through two penalty shootouts, including the one that saw them knock out League Two Colchester United in the first round proper. In round two, 33-year-old teacher Niall Cummins scored a 120th-minute winner to edge out Havant & Waterlooville. Cummins' team-mate James Joyce described him as "our Harry Kane...without the pace or shooting ability."

The tragedy of course is that no fans can attend the game, and the club's hospitality facilities will remain unused. Hopefully the prize money and TV revenue for reaching this stage will soften the blow, but of course, memories mean more than money for so many.

Trophy-hunter Mourinho on the glory trail

Whether you agree with his approach on and off the pitch or not, you can never deny that Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho is a winner. He has won league titles in Portugal, England, Italy and Spain. He lifted the Champions League trophy with Porto and Inter Milan. He claimed the UEFA Cup with Porto and the Europa League with Manchester United. If you add in the Taca de Portugal, the FA Cup, the League Cup, the Coppa Italia and the Copa del Rey, Mourinho has quite the collection of silverware.

In his first full season as Tottenham boss, Mourinho has already secured a Wembley final, with the North London giants set to take on Manchester City in the final of the League Cup in late April. Tottenham won their Europa League group, and unless Spurs suffer a monumental shock on Sunday, they will make it through to the last 32 of the FA Cup. Mourinho understands the psychological importance of winning a trophy with Tottenham, and he knows that's what chairman Daniel Levy brought him to the club to do.

Mourinho took no chances against Brentford in the League Cup semi-final on Tuesday, fielding a very strong side. With a midweek PL game against Aston Villa on the horizon, it would be a big shock to see the likes of Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son start here. Joe Hart is likely to start in goal, Dele Alli could get a rare chance to shine, Harry Winks and Lucas Moura are in line for starts, while Carlos Vinicius may lead the line.

Tottenham to turn on the style

This is a massive mismatch, and although Marine deserve respect for what they have achieved so far, Tottenham will have underperformed if they don't win this handsomely. Mourinho's natural pragmatism surely won't apply here, and I'd expect even a weakened Tottenham to make a fast start, especially as there'll be a clutch of players keen to catch the manager's eye.

You can use the Sportsbook's Same Game Multi to back Tottenham to lead at half-time and full-time, and for there to be five goals or more in the game. That gives you combined odds of 1.845/6. If you push the boat out further and put in Over 5.5 Goals instead, that price leaps to 2.6613/8.

Backing Moura gives you more

Keep an eye on the team news, but as soon as the starting XI is confirmed, there'll be some decent options in the To Score market. Lucas Moura has shone against inferior opposition in the Europa League, and he has rattled in four goals in that competition. The Brazilian's searing pace could cause Marine all kinds of problems. He is trading at 5/6 in the To Score market, while Kane is 1/7 and Son is 1/3.

Another option is Dele Alli, who is 11/10 to find the net. He has only scored twice this season, with both goals coming in the Europa League, but if he starts against Marine, he'll surely get chances to score. If Lucas Moura doesn't start and Dele does, back Dele to find the net.

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