Trying to ignore the speculation (and let’s hope it’s just that) regarding Harry, Tottenham have got quite a vital match on their hands tomorrow against Bolton.
I use the word ‘vital’ because this game is a big test, despite it being against a side that have struggled so far this season. We have a terrible record against Bolton and last won away there back in 1996, which was before they’d even moved into the Reebok.
You can see why we’ve struggled against them over the years. The side that Sam Allardyce built was big, strong and took no prisoners, whilst the phrase that sums up the average Spurs midfield is ‘powder-puff’.
This season’s vintage actually looks like one of the more robust teams we’ve had in recent memory, mainly due to that man Palacios. He’s injected some steel into us and with Bolton not quite the human battering ram they once were, this is an outfit that we should be able to beat.
One decision Harry needs to make is in regards to his central defence. I think we can safely say that Bassong starts, but will Huddlestone continue alongside him following his impressive display against Burnley, or will Dawson be brought back into the team to compete with Kevin Davies?
Up front Defoe may miss out with injury, which would mean that Crouch plays alongside Keane. Whoever starts, we should be able to get goals against a side that have conceded in every Premier League game this season.
Last season we won just four away games. In 07/08 it was three, 06/07 five and 05/06 six. It’s no wonder we’re considered a soft touch when we can’t win on the road and our record against clubs in the north west is particularly bad. Probably because it’s always raining up there.
So now is the time to ram those southern softies jibes down some northern throats. We’ve already won twice away this season, as well as hammering two Championship teams on our travels. Let’s prove they weren’t a fluke and make winning on the road a habit, rather than a rare treat.