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Premier League

  • 16 October 2010
  • • 15:00
  • • Craven Cottage, London
  • Referee: M. Dean
  • • Attendance: 25615

Fulham - Tottenham Preview: Moussa Dembele in line for return as Harry Redknapp's defensive problems ease

Fulham - Tottenham Preview: Moussa Dembele in line for return as Harry Redknapp's defensive problems ease



Moussa Dembele, who was sidelined by a late tackle by Stoke City's Andy Wilkinson in the League Cup, could return after taking part in a handful of training sessions. Andrew Johnson could also make his long-awaited comeback from a knee injury, while goalkeeper David Stockdale may also be available.

Bobby Zamora, Philippe Senderos and Stephen Kelly are all long-term absentees.

Possible Starting XI: Schwarzer; Baird, Hughes, Hangeland, Salcido; Davies, Etuhu, Murphy, Duff; Dempsey; Dembele.


Harry Redknapp could welcome back Younes Kaboul and William Gallas, who were both in training at Spurs Lodge on Thursday. Michael Dawson is also in with an outside chance of returning, while Benoit Assou-Ekotto is also expected to be fit following a knee injury.

Ledley King, Aaron Lennon and Jermain Defoe are unavailable, while Jamie O'Hara and Jonathan Woodgate are still without return dates.

Possible Starting XI: Gomes; Hutton, Kaboul, Gallas, Assou-Ekotto; Van der Vaart, Huddlestone, Modric, Bale; Pavlyuchenko, Crouch.

Spurs attempt to pick stubborn Cottage lock

Tottenham will arrive at Craven Cottage on Saturday knowing a win could temporarily send them as high as third, level on points with second-placed Manchester City.

But winning at Fulham has not proved to be easy for anyone this season. Mark Hughes' side are one of only two teams to remain unbeaten after seven games in the Premier League, sharing the honour with Manchester United, and have conceded just three goals at home.

However, they have won only one game so far this season, at home to 19th-placed Wolves, and so a defeat could see them make a significant drop into the bottom half of the table.

Unhappy hunting ground

Spurs will have to reverse a long spell without a Premier League victory at Craven Cottage if they are to be the first team to beat Fulham this season, though. Redknapp's side have not won there in the league since 2002, and recent visits will bring back unhappy memories for goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes.

In November 2008, the Brazilian handed Fulham the lead - literally - as he spilled a Simon Davies cross into his own net. Roy Hodgson's side went on to win the game 2-1, and the Spurs revival under Redknapp was halted.

Tottenham and Gomes are a different proposition these days though, and with talent like Gareth Bale at the top of his game, the visitors will be confident of securing a long-awaited win.

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Last Five Matches
Team News
Available Squads
23Mark SchwarzerGoalkeeper
6Chris BairdDefender
18Aaron HughesDefender
5Brede HangelandDefender
3C. SalcidoDefender
29Simon DaviesMidfielder
27Jonathan GreeningMidfielder
13Danny MurphyMidfielder
2Clint DempseyStriker
-Diomansy KamaraStriker
30Mousa DembeleStriker
-David StockdaleGoalkeeper
5Rafik HallicheDefender
4John PaintsilDefender
17B. RiiseMidfielder
2Stephen KellyDefender
11Zoltán GeraMidfielder
7Eddie JohnsonStriker
6Alan HuttonDefender
13William GallasDefender
20Ledley KingDefender
32Benoit Assou-EkottoDefender
23Rafael van der VaartMidfielder
19Luka ModricMidfielder
8Tom HuddlestoneMidfielder
11Gareth BaleMidfielder
9Roman PavlyuchenkoStriker
23Carlo CudiciniGoalkeeper
8Jermaine JenasMidfielder
21Niko KranjcarMidfielder
7Robbie KeaneStriker
5S. BassongDefender
7Aaron LennonMidfielder
25Peter CrouchStriker
Players to Watch
Clint Dempsey
Clint Dempsey
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 2
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
Playing in somewhat of an emergency striker's role, Clint Dempsey once again displayed his ability in front of goal as he struck to secure a point against West Ham. The American is likely to continue, possibly in support of Moussa Dembele, on Saturday.
Rafael van der Vaart
Rafael van der Vaart
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 23
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
Only one player has arguably captured the imagination of Spurs fans more than Gareth Bale recently, and that's Rafael van der Vaart. The Dutch playmaker has scored four goals in his first six games for the club, and has had a hand in several other strikes. Expect another all-action display.

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