Tottenham Hotspur vs Spartak Moscow preview

Game : Tottenham Hotspur (Eng) vs Spartak Moscow (Rus)

Competition : UEFA Cup Group D

Venue : White Hart Lane, London

Kickoff : 19.45 GMT

Date : Thursday, December 18, 2008

Injury hit Tottenham Hotspur will look to seal their spot in the next round of the UEFA Cup when they welcome Michael Laudrup’s Spartak Moscow to White Hart Lane on Thursday night.

Spurs need to just avoid a loss against Spartak to be sure of qualification, while the Russians need to get a better result than NEC Nijmegen, who face group leaders Udinese in the other game. Harry Redknapp has said that he will give a chance to youngsters like Dean Parrett and John Bostock in this game. Spurs have a long injury list- Jonathan Woodgate, Jermaine Jenas and Alan Hutton are all out. Ledley King is unlikely to be risked with his persistent knee problems, and Vedran Corluka and Roman Pavlyuchenko are cup tied. Adel Taarabt, Kevin Prince Boateng, Ricardo Rocha, Hossam Ghaly and Paul Stalteri are ineligible as they were not registered for the competition. Darren Bent has tonsilitis

Tottenham Hotspur last five results- all competitions

Tottenham Hotspur 0-0 Manchester United
West Ham United 0-2 Tottenham Hotspur ( Ledley King, Jamie O’Hara)
Watford 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur ( Roman Pavlyuchenko, Darren Bent)
Tottenham 0-1 Everton
NEC 0-1 Tottenham ( Jamie O’Hara)

Tottenham home form ( Last five games- most recent first)

Spartak let slip a one goal advantage with six minutes to go against NEC last fortnight, and the Russians now face a slightly more difficult situation to qualify for the next stage. Because Udinese are already assured of qualification, they might take it easy against NEC, and a win for the Dutch side would almost certainly mean elimination for Spartak. Defender Radoslav Kovac is available for selection after missing the NEC game due to suspension.

Spartak Moscow form(- Last five games- most recent first- Spartak scorers in brackets)

Spartak 1-2 NEC ( Serghei Covalciuc)
Dinamo Zagreb 0-1 Spartak ( Ivan Saenko)
Spartak 1-3 Zenit St.Petersburg ( Aleksandr Pavlenko)
Luch Vladivostok 3-2 Spartak ( Aleksandr Pavlenko,Cristian Maidana)
Spartak 0-1 Lokomotiv Moscow

As you can see, Spartak have only won one of their last five games in all competitions. Despite their long injury list, Spurs will be favourites, especially as they are playing at home. Tottenham to win 2-1, with Luka Modric and Campbell scoring. Saenko to score for Spartak.

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