It’s our first taste of Champions League football tonight and while the rest of the country sits and hopes that we ‘do an Everton’, I’m pretty confident that we’ll continue the good start to the season that we made against Manchester City.
Without Joe Hart leaping around like a demented cross between Gordon Banks and Superman, we’d have beaten City comfortably. There is absolutely no reason to be nervous about tonight’s game. Yes, there’s a lot riding on it, but it was the best draw we could have really had and a good English side should always beat a good Swiss team. Unless the English team is England of course.
King is being rested for the away trip to Stoke, so presumably Bassong will come in alongside Dawson. In midfield, I suppose that Harry might take the opportunity to give Wilson Palacios his first game of the season if he feels we need some defensive cover.
I also don’t expect Crouch to play. The game is being played on an artificial pitch and although they have come a long way from the days when Luton Town and QPR played on their billiard tables, we might want to play more of a close passing game on what could be a fast surface. Redknapp will want Crouch in his team for Stoke anyway, to help out against their barrage of throw ins.
So I wouldn’t be surprised if Keane gets a start, if only to put him in the shop window with just a couple of weeks till transfer deadline days. What a shame that Cardiff City are no longer looking for a striker.
The pitch could be a leveller, but again, if we create anything like the amount of chances as we did on Saturday, we have to score and even a score draw is as good as a win in Europe.
Of course I know next to nothing about the opposition, except that their right back Steve Sutter was born round the corner from White Hart Lane and is a Spurs fan. That’s the sort of story that tends to come up in the FA Cup rather than Europe’s premier competition and let’s hope that it doesn’t have an entirely happy ending.
Come on you Spurs and remember, watch out for the carpet burns.