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  • 25 September 2010
  • • 15:00
  • • Boleyn Ground, London
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Premier League Preview: West Ham United – Tottenham

Premier League Preview: West Ham United – Tottenham

By Richard Parry

West Ham United
welcome Tottenham to Upton Park on Saturday, as Spurs face their second London derby in as many games, and Avram Grant’s side have finally found that winning feeling.


Cup a load of that

It happened, it finally happened, Avram Grant tasted victory – a competitive victory – on Tuesday night, as the Hammers ran out 2-1 winners at the Stadium of Light, an impressive achievement considering Sunderland’s home form this season: A victory over Manchester City, and holding Arsenal to a draw, two particularly outstanding results.

Still, it wasn’t a league win, and other than Roy Hodgson, the former Portsmouth man is probably the league’s most under fire manager at present, and is in desperate need of three league points.


Harry returns home

Having spent eight years as a player at Upton Park, notching 172 appearances, before a seven-year spell as manager, Harry Redknapp will always be associated with West Ham.

Spurs suffered a different fate to that of the hammers in midweek, as a much-changed Spurs side were eliminated from the League Cup by an equally altered Arsenal side, 4-1 at White Hart Lane. Nonetheless, with Tottenham sitting pretty in fifth spot in the table, the bottom-placed Hammers will need to fire on all cylinders to record a victory on Saturday.

But West Ham fans take heart, of the 58 league meetings between these two sides at Upton Park, the Hammers have won on 25 occasions, bagging a total of 87 goals.


Team News: Injuries & Suspensions

West Ham


Grant is without four members of his first-team squad for Saturdays match, as Valon Behrami (calf injury), summer signing Thomas Hitzlsperger (thigh injury), Zavon Hines and Jack Collison – both sidelined with knee injuries – are ruled out for the visit of Tottenham.


Team News: Injuries & Suspensions

Tottenham


Spurs go into the weekend’s fixture without six members of the 25-man Premier League squad, with the likes of Vedran Corluka (back injury), Younes Kaboul (hamstring), Michael Dawson (knee and ankle ligaments), Jermain Defoe (ankle sprain) and goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes ruled out (groin strain).


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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Robert GreenGoalkeeper
2Lars JacobsenDefender
22Manuel Da Costa TrindadeDefender
20Matthew UpsonDefender
19Danny GabbidonDefender
8Kieron DyerMidfielder
28Scott ParkerMidfielder
16Mark NobleMidfielder
34Boa MorteMidfielder
33Victor Nsofor ObinnaStriker
39Frédéric PiquionneStriker
34Marek StechGoalkeeper
26Tal Ben HaimDefender
-Radoslav KovacDefender
18Julien FaubertMidfielder
17Pablo Edson BarreraStriker
9Carlton ColeStriker
17Benni McCarthyStriker
23Carlo CudiciniGoalkeeper
6Alan HuttonDefender
22Vedran CorlukaDefender
5S. BassongDefender
11Gareth BaleMidfielder
7Aaron LennonMidfielder
8Tom HuddlestoneMidfielder
8Jermaine JenasMidfielder
19Luka ModricMidfielder
23Rafael van der VaartMidfielder
25Peter CrouchStriker
-Stipe PletikosaGoalkeeper
17Giovani dos SantosStriker
21Niko KranjcarMidfielder
8W. PalaciosMidfielder
15SandroMidfielder
7Robbie KeaneStriker
9Roman PavlyuchenkoStriker
Players to Watch
Scott Parker
Scott Parker
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 28
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
Club captain, midfield general, goalscorer (of late), Scott Parker is quickly becoming Mr West Ham – it’s just a shame that he hasn’t got the players around him to thrive.

The former Chelsea, Newcastle and Charlton man was the subject of much interest from Tottenham in the summer, but having recently penned a new five-year deal with the Hammers, Parker will out to show the Upton Park faithful what they have, and Spurs, what they couldn’t obtain.

Rafael van der Vaart
Rafael van der Vaart
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 23
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
It may have been Spurs’ substitutes who made the most telling contribution in last weekend’s victory over Wolves, but it was the performance of Rafael van der Vaart which caught my eye.

The Dutchman was at the heart of every moment of quality at White Hart Lane last week. His precision passing, careering runs, and perhaps most impressively, his workrate, was a joy to behold at times. If given the opportunity, or even just a sniff of one, the Tottenham’s no.11 could severely punish the Hammers.

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