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Premier League

  • December 9, 2012
  • • 15:00
  • • Goodison Park, Liverpool
  • Referee: K. Friend
  • • Attendance: 36494
2
FT
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Everton - Tottenham Preview: High-flying pair look for win to enhance their fourth place credentials

Spurs have climbed up the table with a run of three straight victories, but the Toffees will want to put a dent in the Champions League ambitions of their visitors

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

EVERTON

Howard
Hibbert, Jagielka, Distin, Baines
Gibson, Osman,
Naismith, Fellaini, Pienaar
Jelavic
TOTTENHAM

Lloris
Walker, Caulker, Vertonghen, Naughton

Sandro, Huddlestone
Lennon, Dembele, Dempsey
De
foe

David Moyes has no fresh injury worries to contend with and could name the same side which earned a highly credible draw at Manchester City last Saturday.

Phil Neville (knee) is a long-term casualty for the Toffees, whilst Belgium attacker Kevin Mirallas (hamstring) has been out for a month, and is still not fit enough to return. Victor Anichebe (hamstring) also looks sets to remain on the sidelines.

Andre Villas-Boas will be without key man Gareth Bale for the match at Goodison Park after the Welshman limped out of their 3-0 win over Fulham last time out.

Bale (hamstring) is joined on the treatment table by Benoit Assou-Ekotto (knee) and Scott Parker (achilles), however the pair are close to a return to first-team action.

Younes Kaboul (knee) is not expected back before the new year, although fellow defender Michael Dawson (hamstring) could travel for Saturday's clash.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Everton sit three points behind Tottenham going into the match at Goodison Park, but the Toffees should be confident of avoiding defeat - they have not lost to Spurs at home since 2007.
  • There has been much talk of Everton making an uncharacteristically good start to the season, but that form may have worn off in recent times with David Moyes’ men winning just one of their last nine games - seven of which were draws.
  • Everton's barren run of wins looks to have coincided with a dip in form for marksman Nikica Jelavic (pictured, right). The Croatia international has just five goals this season, all of which have come against clubs in the bottom six of the Premier League.
  • Fans of Tottenham may as well leave if their team are trailing going into the final 10 minutes of the game. They are yet to score past the 80th minute mark in a Premier League game this season.
  • Those same fans should not leave any earlier, though. Away from home Spurs have been very active in the window between the 70th and 80th minute - they have scored 43% of there total away Premier League goals in this period.
  • Tottenham have bounced back well from their humiliating 5-2 defeat at the hands of their bitter north London rivals Arsenal in mid-November. They have won their last three games in the Premier League to rise up to fourth place - some five points ahead of the Gunners - and are now level on points with Chelsea.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
24Tim HowardGoalkeeper
3Leighton BainesDefender
6Phil JagielkaDefender
15Sylvain Distin Defender
23Seamus ColemanDefender
4Darron Gibson Midfielder
21Leon OsmanMidfielder
22Steven PienaarMidfielder
25Marouane FellainiMidfielder
18Nikica JelavicStriker
11Kevin MirallasStriker
1Jan MuchaGoalkeeper
5John HeitingaDefender
8Bryan OviedoMidfielder
10Thomas HitzlspergerMidfielder
20Ross BarkleyMidfielder
14Steven NaismithStriker
27Apostolos VelliosStriker
25Hugo LlorisGoalkeeper
5Jan VertonghenDefender
13William GallasDefender
2Kyle WalkerDefender
45Steven CaulkerDefender
7Aaron LennonMidfielder
19Mousa DembéléMidfielder
30SandroMidfielder
2Clint DempseyStriker
10Emmanuel AdebayorStriker
18Jermain DefoeStriker
24Brad FriedelGoalkeeper
16Kyle NaughtonDefender
8Tom HuddlestoneMidfielder
-Gylfi SigurdssonMidfielder
14Jake LivermoreMidfielder
17Andros TownsendMidfielder
27Iago FalquéStriker
Players to Watch
Marouane Fellaini
Marouane Fellaini
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 25
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The giant Belgian proved his worth once again last week with the opening goal in the draw at Manchester City, and his exploits in front of goal will be in high-demand once again for the Toffees. A key player in both boxes, Fellaini has been one of the league's standout players this season - and along with team-mate Leighton Baines - is making an early charge to feature in the Premier League team of the season. If Everton's canny left-back can find the right delivery for the rangy midfield man, it could spell devastating consequences for their opponents on Sunday.
Mousa Dembele
Mousa Dembele
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 30
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
It's an almighty tussle of the Belgian powerhouses on Sunday, and the one man who might be able to stop the power of Fellaini is the man who plays with him so often at international level. Like his Belgium team-mate, Dembele has been on fire, with his powerful bursts forward from midfield causing big problems for many of Spurs' opponents this campaign. He is also useful in both penalty areas, and his understanding with the attacking triumvirate of Lennon, Defoe and Dempsey could spell trouble for Everton on the counterattack.
Prediction
Both sides are in with a great chance of qualifying for next season's Champions League, and a win on Sunday could set them up for a good run over the busy festive period. The hosts will be confident of victory against a potentially tired Spurs after their European exploits on Thursday, but the visitors will be buoyant after their impressive 3-0 win at Fulham last time out.

There are a number of potential match-winners and players of the highest quality in both teams, so we can be sure that the game should be a lively one. Everton’s week of rest might just see them edge it, though.
Editor's Prediction

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