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Premier League

  • 23 October 2010
  • • 12:45
  • • White Hart Lane, London
  • Referee: M. Jones
  • • Attendance: 35967

Tottenham - Everton Preview: Rafael van der Vaart returns after Champions League suspension as Leon Osman and John Heitinga miss out

Tottenham - Everton Preview: Rafael van der Vaart returns after Champions League suspension as Leon Osman and John Heitinga miss out



Harry Redknapp may revert to a 4-4-2 formation at home after playing a lone striker against Fulham and Inter, while Rafael van der Vaart returns to the side after being suspended from Champions League duty.

There are still injury concerns surrounding Ledley King and Younes Kaboul, so the central defensive pairing of William Gallas and Sebastien Bassong may continue.

Jermain Defoe, Jamie O'Hara, Jonathan Woodgate and Michael Dawson are still out.

Probable starting XI: Gomes; Hutton, Gallas, Bassong, Assou-Ekotto; Van der Vaart, Huddlestone, Modric, Bale; Crouch, Pavlyuchenko.


David Moyes will be forced to make changes to the side that beat Liverpool on Sunday, as John Heitinga has a calf muscle strain and Leon Osman has been ruled out for six weeks with an ankle injury.

Marouane Fellaini, Steven Pienaar, Jack Rodwell and Victor Anichebe are unlikely to return until at least November, though striker Louis Saha is nearing a return to fitness.

Probable starting XI: Howard; Hibbert, Jagielka, Distin, Baines; Coleman, Neville, Arteta, Bilyaletdinov; Cahill; Yakubu.

Spurs learning to battle on all fronts

Tottenham can at least temporarily climb to as high as second with a victory over Everton in the Premier League's early kick-off on Saturday.

If Harry Redknapp's side want another Champions League challenge, the likes of which they faced against Inter on Wednesday next season, they need to dig their heels into the top four once again.

Everton have also been fancied as Champions League contenders in the past, but two consecutive slow starts have damaged their chances of disrupting the Premier League's elite clubs, as they have done once before.

Goals in store at White Hart Lane

David Moyes' side have corrected their poor form of late though, having taken seven points from a possible nine in their last three games, with the all-important Merseyside derby victory over Liverpool fresh in the memory.

Everton will not be fazed by the trip to White Hart Lane either; though they lost 2-1 in north London last season, they came close to rescuing a point from the game in a thrilling encounter, with the loss breaking an impressive run of three consecutive wins on their travels to face Spurs.

Tottenham fans too will have fond memories of facing Everton at home. This contest has wielded a feast of goals in the past as debutant Dean Marney dominated Moyes' side in a 5-2 win on New Year's Day 2005, while the year before, a Robbie Keane hat-trick helped Spurs to a dramatic 4-3 victory. Brace yourselves...

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