Tottenham travel across London to Craven Cottage tomorrow to take on Fulham, and there could be a hot reception for former forward Clint Dempsey who is expected to keep his place in the Spurs starting line-up. Martin Jol has today commented that his side did everything they could to persuade Dempsey to stay, but to no avail. Moussa Dembele on the other hand is likely to be far more welcome. Nick Harris take a look at the two Tottenham players contrasting returns to their former club.
Fulham have lost the last five games against Spurs and are without a victory in seven and will be hoping to turn that around, but are missing three important players. The squads for tomorrow's fixture have been announced, confirming the home side are without injured duo of Alex Kacaniklic and Bryan Ruiz, which certainly gives Spurs a boost as the pair have been in fine form this season.
Another piece of good news for Tottenham is the absence of key Fulham defender Brede Hangeland who is serving a three-match suspension.
Likewise Tottenham are without Emmanuel Adebayor, who is serving the final game of his three-match ban incurred for his fateful sending off in the North London derby. However key midfielders Moussa Dembele and Sandro are fit and expected to start the fixture, along with Gareth Bale, Aaron Lennon and Jermain Defoe.
Benoit Assou-Ekotto is on the verge of a return, but tomorrow's game will be too soon for him. The left-back will resume training next week, giving Spurs a boost heading into the fixture-laden month of December. Scott Parker is also nearing a comeback, with Andre Villas-Boas commenting the midfielder should be available in two weeks time.
Andre Villas-Boas has issued a warning to former player Luka Modric ordering him to keep his nose out of Gareth Bale's business. The Croatian had told today's Sun that he would welcome Bale at Real Madrid, but AVB shot back in his morning press conference, saying the midfielder should worry about Madrid's own poor form, adding it is 'impossible' for Bale to leave.
Hugo Lloris has told of his adjustment to settle in England since signing for Spurs, commenting that he now feels 'normal' to be playing regularly. The Frenchman is again expected to be given the nod to start tomorrow.
Spurs have been linked with Nancy full-back Massadio Haidara. The 19-year-old Frenchman plays at left-back and would be cover for Benoit Assou-Ekotto. Aston Villa came close to signing him last summer but the deal fell through when Alex McLeish was sacked. The French club want £6.5 million for the powerful defender.
Jermain Defoe has stated in an interview he would love David Beckham to join him at Spurs. However a deal remains unlikely due to Beckham's own recent comments that he would not play for another English club apart from Manchester United.
image: © Ronnie Macdonald