Ben & Rob talk... 2022/23 fixtures
Fri 17 June 2022, 11:00|Tottenham Hotspur
No sooner have we waved goodbye to a memorable 2021/22 than we're peeking through the curtains for 2022/23 to arrive! The fixtures were announced on Thursday so, without further ado, here's N17 Live presenter Ben Haines and Club commentator Rob Daly with their thoughts on our early matches next season...
"I love the fact that we're at home against Southampton first game of the season (Saturday 6 August), particularly when you consider how special it was at home on the first game of the season last year. That victory over Manchester City and the atmosphere that accompanied it was incredibly special. I also think it's really nice to have something in the first month to get your teeth stuck into from a derby point of view. Chelsea in week two (scheduled for 13 August) is a brilliant challenge and a really good benchmarking exercise to see where the squad is at after a full summer with Antonio Conte. West Ham away (30 August) is also massive. The first games I look for on the fixture list are the north London derbies, for me, easily our biggest fixtures. Those matches are currently scheduled for 1 October at their place and the second game is 14 January at home.
"It's definitely worth just touching on the end to the season as well - in the month of May there are four match rounds and during that time we won't play against any of the classic 'big six' - having said this the only 'big' match-up in that time is City against Chelsea. The BBC 5 Live commentator Ian Dennis shared a brilliant bit of research he did recently around the idea of how much changes over the last few weeks of the season. The data shows positions very rarely change - with the fixtures falling this way the implication is the back end of April will be huge for us where we face United and Liverpool back-to-back.
"I think the other thing we all need to jump on immediately is... 'the chaaaammmpiiiioooonnnnsss'. The first time we get to hear that music again and see Spurs in that glorious all white European strip is 6/7 September, with the draw for the group stage taking place on 25 August."
"As Ben says, a home match is a nice way to start - and a first Saturday 3pm KO this decade! Chelsea away for the second one catches the eye. Spurs showed how they can compete with the best last season - beating City twice and drawing both games with Liverpool. However, Chelsea won all four meetings last season - in fact, Spurs haven’t beaten them since the first leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final in 2018/19. A positive result at Stamford Bridge would be a strong start. As someone who got in to football in the early-90s, seeing Nottingham Forest back in the Premier League has a certain appeal to it. Add that game to a couple of meetings with European hopefuls like Wolves and West Ham, and it feels like an even-handed start to the season.
"In terms of what I look out for, obviously the two north London derbies, the games against other teams competing in the top six and the meetings with West Ham. I was also particularly interested In the post-World Cup games. This break in the domestic season will be unusual - 12/13 November, resuming again after the World Cup on Boxing Day - and it’s Brentford, Villa and Palace from Boxing Day onwards. Kane, Son, Lloris, Perisic, Romero, Bentancur, Hojbjerg plus maybe others will be coming back from that tournament you’d imagine for that first game on Boxing Day, so that will be interesting."
Sat Aug 6 Southampton H
Sat Aug 13 Chelsea A
Sat Aug 20 Wolverhampton Wanderers H
Sat Aug 27 Nottingham Forest A
Tue Aug 30 West Ham United A