Fulham at home and then Portsmouth in the semi. This is Tottenham Hotspur we’re dealing with here, so absolutely nothing is guaranteed, but every Spurs supporter will have given out a cheer when Ginola drew out Chelsea to play Aston Villa.

If we’re to capitalise upon this situation, then we must create more chances than we did at Craven Cottage. We had a lot of possession, but it was Fulham that forced our goalkeeper to make the better saves.

I’ve never been of the opinion that Crouch and Pavlyuchenko could work as a partnership and I wasn’t proved wrong on Saturday. They’re too similar and as a combination, lack pace and movement.

We would have been better off playing Pavlyuchenko as a lone striker and matching Fulham’s five man midfield. That would have given Luka Modric more license to do what he does best. I think he can play in the centre of a three man midfield, but it asks a lot of him to play as one of two.

Luckily for Luka, Wilson Palacios produced one of his best performances for a long time. He was disciplined and won the ball back for us on so many occasions. When we had possession though, we struggled to carve out opportunities against a well organised Fulham.

Gareth Bale had a pretty decent game down the left, but it’s fair to say that his move to midfield saw him create less mayhem than he normally manages from left back. The full back positions have the most space in the modern game and when we have less injuries I hope that Bale returns to the left of our defence.

I was pleased with a draw and the opportunity to take Fulham back to the Lane, but must admit to thinking that Harry could have changed things round a little bit sooner in an effort to win the game. Yes, he had a lot of kids on the bench, but he also had Gudjohnsen and Defoe. With Pavlyuchenko and Crouch not really gelling, switching things around seemed a pretty obvious ploy, but we left it too late.

The replay on the 24th March will do me fine though. Fulham may work hard and get men behind the ball, but they also give you the opportunity to play. Hopefully, our side should look a little stronger in terms of personnel in a couple of weeks time and will have enough to progress to the semi finals.

What could possibly go wrong?

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  1. the funny thing is, Villa could well beat Chelsea, and we could lose to Fulham or Pompey, I hope we don’t lose of course, but we shouldn’t count our chickens!

    Heres hoping COYS!

  2. I don’t think it was the fact that Bale swithed to MF that saw him become less effective more to do with Fulham doubling up on him, but other then that spot on agree with everything you said

  3. Bale was excellent on the left and had the beating of Baird almost everytime, it was just that Duff doubled up and invariably got the loose ball. I would have liked t see Assou-Ekottu overlapping at least once which would have made it difficult for Duff to shore up. Still Bale’s delivery once he gets past his man isn’t quite good enough yet.

    Thinking about it we were dominant on the other flank too, but again delivery was poor.

    I quite agree about Crouch and Pav combination, in my mind Pav would be great as a lone striker. However the problem is that we don’t have a fit midfielder at the moment to come in. Looking at the bench on Saturday it was no surprise we only made one substitution.

    We were completely dominant in the first half without creating enough goal scoring opportunities no doubt due to a well-drilled but workmanlike Fulham. Though as the temperature dropped, so did our tempo and fluidity. I just hope that the well-organised Fulham team don’t force a penalty shoot-out in the replay. This would easily knock us out of the cup…

  4. I agree with what you say but with the bale situation it was a case where they had 2 and sometimes 3 players on him therefore, we should have exploited other areas but im happy with the result as fulham are good at home,

    3-1 at the lane, 3 -0 against pompey and wembley here we come again.

  5. Lots of pretty good comments here, but the one thing that troubles me is Wilson’s yellows. One more against Blackburn and he misses important games in cup and league, with noone to take over. His yellows might well be our undoing in both competitions.


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