It’s funny how quickly things can change within just a few months. On that day when we won 9-1 the one thing that we didn’t think we’d be struggling to do later on in the season, would be to score goals.
In my interview with the Wigan blogger Dan Farrimond, he stated that Wigan are the sort of team that collapse as soon as they concede a second goal.
In many ways the two teams share some similarities. Unless Spurs score early, we also seem to often suffer a type of mental collapse. We get too panicky too early and start launching hopeful balls up to Crouch, when in reality there is still plenty of time to continue playing football.
Today a lot will depend on whether a early goal is scored. Should we go ahead, Wigan could be forgiven for crumbling having suffered such a heavy defeat to us earlier on in the season. But the longer that they can keep us at bay, then the more their confidence will grow.
One thing that would have seen our confidence swell is the return of Aaron Lennon, but he hasn’t been named in the squad, despite rumours that he might have featured in the match.
You’d imagine then that David Bentley will continue on the right, with Huddlestone and Palacios in central midfield. I wonder though if Modric will keep his place on the left? He looked out of sorts against Bolton and Kranjcar had a very good game in our 9-1 win over Wigan. With three games in the next week, there is bound to be some rotation between the Croats.
Redknapp has promised that we’ll see some rotation up front, with Pavlyuchenko starting at least one match this week. I’ve not been impressed with his moaning, but I would like to see him be given a chance alongside Defoe today. We all know what Crouch can do and if the experiment doesn’t work out, then he’s always a useful option from the bench.
Without Lennon’s pace, then Pavlyuchenko’s guile may be what we need for the goals to start to flow again. We know he’s a good player, but what’s in question is whether he’ll be that motivated following all his troubles at Spurs. Hopefully he would want to make Harry look silly by giving a great performance.
In defence the only question is whether Ledley King will start today or possibly be left for the Bolton game, as has been suggested in the press. I can’t see him being rested, as playing on Wednesday would see him have to miss the Everton match next week. It makes far more sense that he misses one game rather than two.
No one expected us to beat Wigan 9-1 and today that result means nothing. Any sort of victory would be reason to celebrate, because Wigan aren’t that bad a team in reality.
Whether they can contain us may come down to what lessons they learned in that humbling defeat. They played very open, attacking football that day, which played into our hands.
Today there will be no Lennon and no Edman to give us a free pass down the right. If Wigan keep it tight, we’ll probably struggle to break them down, as has been the case with so many of the bottom-half teams we’ve played this season.
So do us a favour please Roberto and go for the win. Come on You Spurs!