Match Preview: Tottenham Hotspur v Sunderland
White Hart Lane, London N17 - The World Famous Home of the Spurs
Saturday 7th November 2009, Kick Off 15:00
Premier League, Match 12
Tottenham Hotspur: 5th in Premier League, 19 points from 33
Sunderland: 8th in Premier League, 17 points from 33
Referee: Kevin Friend
Assistant referees: Stephen Artis & Simon Beck
Fourth official: Andy Woolmer
Tottenham Hotspur host Sunderland at White Hart Lane on Saturday 7th November with both clubs experiencing a dip in form compared with their good starts to the season. Spurs have lost two successive Premier League matches to Stoke at home and Arsenal away while Sunderland have only picked-up one point in home draw with West Ham and an away defeat at Birmingham City.
Former Spurs striker Darren Bent will be returning for the first time since his big money move to Sunderland during the summer and he has been in excellent form for the Black Cats this season. Many people think that he deserves a place in England's 2010 World Cup Finals squad.
Last season, Sunderland won four points off Tottenham with a 2-1 win in London in August and a 1-1 draw at the Stadium of Light in March. Harry will be looking to improve on this record in 2009-10 and he should have Aaron Lennon and Jonathan Woodgate returning from injury as well as the services of Jermain Defoe, who has now completed his three-match suspension. Croatian midfield maestro Luka Modric is still unavailable though.
Aaron Lennon could be back in contention for Saturday's Barclays Premier League clash with Sunderland at The Lane. The winger suffered an ankle injury late-on in our defeat against Stoke City last month and has sat out our last two games. But, as manager Harry Redknapp reported in Friday's pre-match press conference, the 22-year-old has been back in training this week. Harry said: "Aaron worked very hard on Thursday and ran well, so we'll just have to wait and see. "I'm hoping he'll be ok but it depends on whether or not he has any reaction tomorrow [Saturday], so it's 50-50. We'll see how he feels and if he doesn't feel right then I won't take a chance."
Jermain Defoe, however, will definitely be available again following his three-match suspension for the straight red card he picked up in last month's win at Portsmouth. And his manager feels the striker owes the team, saying: "It's nice to have Jermain available again. We've got good strikers here but he was in good goalscoring form before his suspension. Not having him cost us quite badly so he's got to make it up to us now for getting sent off." Meanwhile, Harry also had an update on the fitness of Luka Modric, who has been out of action since August with a fractured fibula. He added: "Luka's on his way back. He's been working with the fitness coaches and pushing on but he's not at a stage where he can get fully involved in training yet."
Sebastien Bassong also misses out after picking up a hamstring injury late on in last weekend's defeat at Arsenal, while Carlo Cudcini (back) and Giovani Dos Santos (ankle) remain sidelined.
Sunderland are hit by the suspensions of Lorik Cana and Kenwyne Jones. John Mensah remains out with a persistent calf problem while Bolo Zenden is also not fit enough to travel to White Hart Lane.
BIG MATCH FACTS:
• Tottenham have won seven of the eight Premier League meetings between the sides at White Hart Lane - Sunderland's only win came last season when they triumphed 2-1.
• In 16 Premier League encounters, Tottenham have won 10, Sunderland four and there have been just two draws.
• The overall league record between the clubs is: Tottenham 39 wins, Sunderland 36 wins and there have been 27 draws.
• Since playmaker Luka Modric has been out injured, Tottenham have earned just seven points from a possible 21.
• Striker Robbie Keane has scored in only two out of Spurs' 11 league matches this season (against Hull and Burnley).
• Spurs have conceded exactly the same number of goals as they had done at this stage last season.
• Sunderland have four former Tottenham players in their ranks in Darren Bent, Frazier Campbell, Steed Malbranque and Andy Reid. Bent scored 25 goals in 79 appearances (36 from the bench) for Tottenham.
• Sunderland sit bottom of the Premier League's disciplinary table after accumulating 22 yellow cards and two red cards.
• The Black Cats have only failed to score in one match in the league this season (v Stoke).
LAST LEAGUE MATCH LINE-UPS:
Tottenham Hotspur (L 0-3 v Arsenal, a):
Gomes, Corluka (Hutton 86), King, Bassong, Assou-Ekotto, Bentley, Huddlestone (Bale 55), Palacios, Jenas, Keane (Pavlyuchenko 65), Crouch. Subs
Not Used: Button, Dawson, Kranjcar, Woodgate.
Sunderland (D 2-2 v West Ham, h):
Gordon, Da Silva, Nosworthy, Turner, Richardson, Malbranque (McCartney 81), Henderson, Cana, Andy Reid, Jones, Bent.
Subs Not Used: Fulop, Ferdinand, Bardsley, Healy, Meyler, Murphy.
WILSON PALACIOS ON STEVE BRUCE:
Wilson Palacios will be coming up against the man who gave him his big break in English football on Saturday for the first time.
Steve Bruce's Sunderland side visit The Lane in this Barclays Premier League clash sitting eighth in the table after a promising start to the campaign. And it was the same manager who brought our all-action midfielder to these shores from his native Honduras when he signed him for Birmingham City on a six-month loan deal in August 2007. The pair's time together at St Andrew's was short-lived when Bruce took over at Wigan Athletic that November, but such was the impression Wilson had made on the former Manchester United skipper, he signed him for The Latics on a permanent deal come January 2008.
And it was in Lancashire where Wilson made his name in 37 Premier League appearances - something the now-Spurs fan favourite will always be thankful for. "Steve Bruce is a very good manager and I have a great deal of respect for him. I really would like to thank him for helping me and developing me as a player when I first came to England. I am very appreciative of what he did for me and my career and I will never forget that." But Wilson knows there will be no time for sentimentality against the Black Cats as we look to bounce back from last weekend's North London derby defeat. Although he recognises how tough a task this will be against a side who may boast a familiar-looking frontline on Saturday - ex-Spurs boys Darren Bent and Fraizer Campbell.
Wilson added: "The most important thing now is to bounce back and win against Sunderland. We are all focused on beating them, we must forget about what happened last week and just focus all our energy and attention on this game because this is the most important game for us now. "But they have some very good players and play a good style of football. In Bent and Campbell, they have very good strikers who we know well and it will be hard for us to keep them contained. "However, if we work together as a team and play the sort of football we are capable, then I'm confident we can secure the three points."
MARK LAWRENSON'S PREDICTION (BBC):
Spurs will be disappointed after losing badly to Arsenal last week but it just underlined the gap that remains between them and the top four. Sunderland have had some great results against the big teams although they have blipped recently which will be driving manager Steve Bruce mad. They've really suffered from the loss of injured Lee Cattermole and they'll struggle to get any points at White Hart Lane.
Verdict: Tottenham Hotspur 3-1 Sunderland
Saturday afternoon's match will be the 107th meeting between Tottenham Hotspur and Sunderland
Here are the results of all the previous 106 games with Spurs' score shown first:
26-Mar-1898 Friendly - H L 0 - 2 11-Feb-1899 F.A. Cup 2 12,371H W 2 - 1 Bradshaw, Cameron 02-Jan-1900Friendly - A W 3 - 1 Hughes, Pratt (2) 01-Sep-09Division 1 10,000A L 1 - 3 Morris 25-Mar-10Division 1 35,000H W 5 - 1 Curtis, Humphreys (2), Steel R, Middlemiss 26-Nov-10Division 1 12,000A L 0 - 4 01-Apr-11Division 1 26,000H D 1 - 1 Minter 16-Sep-11Division 1 16,000A D 1 - 1 R Steel 20-Jan-12Division 1 17,000H D 0 - 0 28-Sep-12Division 1 8,000A D 2 - 2 Bliss, Middlemiss 25-Jan-13Division 1 31,000H L 1 - 2 Minter 08-Nov-13Division 1 36,000H L 1 - 4 Cantrell 14-Mar-14Division 1 10,000A L 0 - 2 19-Dec-14Division 1 5,000H L 0 - 6 09-Jan-15F.A. Cup 1 17,000H W 2 - 1 Walden, Bliss 24-Apr-15Division 1 10,000A L 0 - 5 26-Mar-21Division 1 35,000A W 1 - 0 Seed 02-Apr-21Division 1 35,000H D 0 - 0 11-Mar-22Division 1 41,003H W 1 - 0 Thompson 05-Apr-22Division 1 37,000A L 0 - 2 31-Mar-23Division 1 18,000A L 0 - 2 07-Apr-23Division 1 23,571H L 0 - 1 20-Oct-23Division 1 20,000A L 0 - 1 27-Oct-23Division 1 24,840H D 1 - 1 Lindsay 20-Sep-24Division 1 30,000A L 1 - 4 Lindsay 24-Jan-25Division 1 26,696H W 1 - 0 Seed 26-Sep-25Division 1 30,700A L 0 - 3 06-Feb-26Division 1 31,434H L 0 - 2 18-Sep-26Division 1 17,459A L 2 - 3 Blair (2) 05-Feb-27Division 1 32,506H L 0 - 2 22-Oct-27Division 1 19,039H W 3 - 1 Osborne, Dimmock (2) 28-Mar-28Division 1 9,244A D 0 - 0 07-Oct-33Division 1 44,235H W 3 - 1 Hunt GS, Hall GW, Evans W 21-Feb-34Division 1 16,105A L 0 - 6 13-Oct-34Division 1 28,204A W 2 - 1 Hunt GS, Hall GW 23-Feb-35Division 1 44,886H D 1 - 1 Channell 05-Mar-38F.A. Cup 6 75,038H L 0 - 1 (All-time record attendance at White Hart Lane) 24-Jan-50F.A. Cup 4 66,246H W 5 - 1 Walters (2), Bennett (2), Medley 23-Sep-50Division 1 59,190H D 1 - 1 Baily 03-Feb-51Division 1 56,817A D 0 - 0 27-Oct-51Division 1 50,513A W 1 - 0 Walters 15-Mar-52Division 1 51,745H W 2 - 0 Bennett, Duquemin 29-Nov-52Division 1 45,980H D 2 - 2 Bennett, Duquemin 18-Apr-53Division 1 24,953A D 1 - 1 Walters 31-Oct-53Division 1 38,345A L 3 - 4 Walters, Duquemin, Robb 20-Mar-54Division 1 39,393H L 0 - 3 28-Aug-54Division 1 53,646H L 0 - 1 01-Jan-55Division 1 49,884A D 1 - 1 Dunmore 22-Oct-55Division 1 36,396H L 2 - 3 Brooks, Robb 31-Mar-56Division 1 22,311A L 2 - 3 McClellan (2) 29-Sep-56Division 1 41,657A W 2 - 0 Smith R, Stokes 09-Feb-57Division 1 52,104H W 5 - 2 Harmer, Smith R, Stokes (2), Anderson og 02-Nov-57Division 1 36,091A D 1 - 1 Brooks 15-Mar-58Division 1 40,751H L 0 - 1 04-Mar-61F.A. Cup 6 61,236A D 1 - 1 Jones 08-Mar-61F.A. Cup 6 Replay 64,797H W 5 - 0 Mackay, Smith R, Allen, Dyson (2) 07-Nov-64Division 1 36,677H W 3 - 0 Robertson, Greaves, Jones 20-Mar-65Division 1 44,394A L 1 - 2 Greaves 26-Mar-65Division 1 27,828A L 0 - 2 06-Oct-65Division 1 37,364H W 3 - 0 Mackay, Clayton, Greaves 03-Dec-66Division 1 32,733A W 1 - 0 Gilzean 03-May-67Division 1 33,936H W 1 - 0 Greaves (pen) 30-Sep-67Division 1 36,017H W 3 - 0 Greaves (2), Todd og 10-Feb-68Division 1 31,735A W 1 - 0 Jones 16-Nov-68Division 1 29,072H W 5 - 1 Greaves (4), England 01-Feb-69Division 1 22,251A D 0 - 0 27-Sep-69Division 1 30,523H L 0 - 1 17-Jan-70Division 1 13,993A L 1 - 2 Morgan 18-Aug-73Friendly - A W 1 - 0 Neighbour 20-Nov-76Division 1 30,325A L 1 - 2 Moores 16-Apr-77Division 1 34,155H D 1 - 1 Jones 10-Dec-77Division 2 31,960A W 2 - 1 Duncan (2) 22-Apr-78Division 2 38,220H L 2 - 3 Duncan, Taylor 20-Sep-80Division 1 32,030H D 0 - 0 28-Feb-81Division 1 22,382A D 1 - 1 Crooks 17-Oct-81Division 1 25,317A W 2 - 0 Hazard, Archibald 14-Apr-82Division 1 39,898H D 2 - 2 Galvin, Hoddle 18-Sep-82Division 1 21,137A W 1 - 0 Brooke 22-Jan-83Division 1 25,250H D 1 - 1 Gibson 08-Feb-84Division 1 19,327H W 3 - 0 Perryman, Archibald (2) 07-Apr-84Division 1 15,433A D 1 - 1 Falco 04-Sep-84Division 1 18,895A L 0 - 1 21-Nov-84League Cup 4 27,421A D 0 - 0 05-Dec-84League Cup 4 Replay25,835H L 1 - 2 Roberts (pen) 29-Dec-84Division 1 26,930H W 2 - 0 Hoddle, Crooks 28-Aug-90Division 1 30,214A D 0 - 0 08-Dec-90Division 1 30,431H D 3 - 3 Lineker, Walsh (2) 05-Aug-92Friendly 22,672A W 3 - 0 Anderton (3, 1pen) 29-Jan-95F.A. Cup 4 21,135A W 4 - 1 Klinsmann (2, 1pen), Sheringham, Melville og 23-Oct-96League Cup 3 24,867H W 2 - 1 Armstrong, Campbell 16-Nov-96FA Prem 31,867H W 2 - 0 Sinton, Sheringham 04-Mar-97FA Prem 20,729A W 4 - 0 Iversen (3), Nielsen 31-Oct-99FA Prem 41,904A L 1 - 2 Iversen 14-May-2000FA Prem 36,070H W 3 - 1 Anderton (pen), Sherwood, Carr 04-Nov-00FA Prem 36,016H W 2 - 1 Sherwood, Armstrong 14-Apr-01FA Prem 46,026A W 3 - 2 Clemence, Doherty (2) 19-Sep-01FA Prem 47,310A W 2 - 1 Ziege, Sheringham 02-Mar-02FA Prem 36,062H W 2 - 1 Poyet, Ferdinand 10-Nov-02FA Prem 40,024A L 0 - 2 08-Feb-03FA Prem 36,075H W 4 - 1 Poyet, Doherty, Davies, Sheringham 02-Dec-05FA Prem 36,244H W 3 - 2 Mido, Keane, Carrick 12-Feb-06FA Prem 34,700A D 1 - 1 Keane 11-Aug-07FA Prem 43,967A L 0 - 1 19-Jan-08FA Prem 36,070H W 2 - 0 Lennon, Keane 23-Aug-08FA Prem 36,064H L 1 - 2 Jenas 07-Mar-09FA Prem 37,894 A D 1 - 1 Keane
LAST TIME WE MET...
Sunderland 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur
7th March 2009, Premier League, Stadium of Light
Robbie Keane smashed home a late equaliser to rescue a point for Tottenham against Sunderland.
The hosts took the lead after only two minutes when Kieran Richardson broke into the area and clipped home smartly.
Darren Bent blazed over after latching on to a terrible Dean Whitehead backpass, while Djibril Cisse missed his kick from close range.
Spurs piled forward as they pressed for an equaliser and they got it when Keane volleyed in on 89 minutes.
There was never likely to be much between the teams, as they started the match locked on 31 points with Spurs above their hosts only on goal difference.
But Sunderland, with four former Tottenham players in their squad, were quickest out of the blocks and caught their visitors with a sucker punch.
Richardson collected a loose ball, took one touch to break into the area and slotted the ball into the corner as Heurelho Gomes raced out of his goal.
It was the perfect start for the Black Cats but they soon found themselves on the back foot.
Spurs winger Aaron Lennon produced two good crosses in quick succession but headers from Bent and Keane did not trouble Martin Fulop.
Luka Modric's influence was beginning to tell for the visitors, but still there was no end product.
Bent's free-kick from 25 yards was easily saved by Fulop, who later did well to block at the feet of Ledley King.
In a rare foray up the other end, Sunderland almost profited when Gomes dropped the ball but Cisse failed to take advantage.
The Frenchman, who had been quiet in the opening half, almost made an immediate impact after the break when he raced clear but his shot hit the side netting.
It was another wake-up call for Spurs, who responded by pushing men forward.
And they should have equalised when Whitehead's awful backpass put Bent clean through but the striker smashed the ball high and wide.
It was a glaring miss but not the worst of the afternoon - that belonged to Cisse, who missed his kick when Andy Reid's low cross needed just a touch to make it 2-0.
The Sunderland forward was at it again minutes later when he headed wide from another cross by Reid.
Spurs reacted by bringing on Tom Huddlestone for Jermaine Jenas and, later, David Bentley replaced Wilson Palacios.
In an effort to get a grip in midfield, Sunderland brought on Daryl Murphy for Cisse.
Tottenham continued to press and Modric shot over before Keane did the same when he latched on to a long ball over the top.
Lennon jinked his way into the area and struck a low shot that was blocked by Tal Ben Haim as Sunderland stood firm.
Sunderland had their moments on the break, and felt they should have had a penalty when Kenwyne Jones was pulled down.
And their disappointment at having their appeals waved away soon turned to despair when Spurs broke and Keane superbly volleyed in from Bent's right-wing cross.
Sunderland manager Ricky Sbragia:
"With 89 minutes players, we felt we had got three points. We had an attacking corner and we should have kept the ball and seen the time out.
"Credit to Tottenham, they put a lot of bodies forward. I thought we had seen that off but defensively we were poor.
"To do we what we did was criminal. We got carried away when we should have finished the game off and won 1-0."
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp:
"It would have been an injustice if we had been beaten today.
"We came away from home and dominated - we were in and around their box but we just could not pick the pass or get in the shot to make the breakthrough.
"In the end it took a good pass and good finish from Robbie Keane. It was important we didn't lose today."
Fulop, Bardsley, Ben-Haim, Collins, McCartney, Malbranque, Whitehead, Richardson (Leadbitter 83), Reid (Edwards 82), Jones, Cisse (Murphy 73).
Subs Not Used: Gordon, Davenport, Healy, McShane.
Booked: Richardson, McCartney, Bardsley.
Goals: Richardson 3.
Gomes, Corluka (Pavlyuchenko 83), Woodgate, King, Chimbonda, Lennon, Jenas (Huddlestone 63), Palacios (Bentley 72), Modric, Bent, Keane.
Subs Not Used: Cudicini, Zokora, Dawson, O'Hara.
Booked: Corluka, Woodgate.
Goals: Keane 89.
Ref: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire).
BBC Sport Player Rater man of the match: Tottenham Hotspur's Robbie Keane