Bolton Wanderers v Tottenham Hotspur: Preview

05 November 2010 08:13
Bolton manager Owen Coyle believes his side can test Tottenham to the full despite the visitors' stunning victory against holders Inter Milan in the Champions League.

Coyle is anxious for Bolton to bounce back after only their second league defeat of the season, a 1-0 home loss to Liverpool.

Tottenham beat Rafael Benitez's side 3-1 at White Hart Lane on Tuesday and will travel to the Reebok Stadium full of confidence.

But Coyle is convinced his team is up for the fight and will give a better show than the Italians.

He said: "Our performance against Liverpool was of a high standard. The disappointment was in losing the game so late.

"It was not a feeling we have been accustomed to given how well we had been doing.

"We have to pick ourselves up and be ready for Tottenham as they are playing well. They gave an outstanding performance against Inter Milan and all credit to them.

"It is a game we are looking forward to. We need to play our maximum and try and get the three points. We know our capabilities.

"I have a great group of players who work their socks off. They did very little wrong against Liverpool.

"The margins in the league are minimal. There are a lot of very good teams and everyone is doing their best to try to win matches.

"We have to make sure we do not feel sorry for ourselves. It is a great game to do it against a team who gave an outstanding performance in midweek against the champions of Europe."

Coyle could be tempted to name an unchanged side with Matt Taylor retaining his place even though Martin Petrov is available again after a slight hamstring strain.

"Continuity and consistency of selection helps," the Bolton boss added. "Whether we will freshen things up for Saturday time will tell.

"You want selection headaches. That is a good problem for a manager to have."

Rafael van der Vaart will miss out for Spurs with a hamstring injury.

The Inter Milan victory saw Holland star Van der Vaart aggravate the problem picked up in last weekend's defeat at Manchester United.

Aaron Lennon is also doubtful with a hamstring injury, goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes returns from suspension, while captain Ledley King and Vedran Corluka (both groin) are still out.

Jermain Defoe, Michael Dawson (both ligament damage), Jamie O'Hara (back) and Jonathan Woodgate (groin) are long-term absentees.

Meanwhile, Harry Redknapp has ordered his Tottenham players to forget about their historic victory - because he managed to do so just an hour after the final whistle was blown.

This week has been dominated by Spurs' stunning 3-1 win against the European champions and another world-class performance from man of the moment Gareth Bale.

But Bale and his team-mates face a challenge of a completely different kind when they travel to a stadium where Tottenham have never won in the Barclays Premier League.

Bolton's Reebok Stadium has been Spurs' bogey ground in recent years, with the visitors failing to win any of their 10 league games there.

And manager Redknapp will tolerate nothing more than 100% focus from his squad as he tries to break that sequence.

"I was in my car driving home an hour after the end of the game the other night and you're thinking about nothing else but how we can get a result on Saturday," Redknapp said.

"We've got to play well on Saturday at Bolton away from home if we're going to pick up anything, because they're a good side, they're a dangerous team."

Redknapp admitted his players were still buzzing from their extraordinary exploits against Inter.

He said: "I think everybody who enjoys watching football must have enjoyed the performance.

"It was a great game but, as I've said before, as one game finishes, within half an hour you're thinking about Saturday's game.

"What happened on Tuesday has happened and now we're moving on and getting prepared for a big game tomorrow.

"You've only got to look at our record there; it's not good.

"I've never been to the Reebok yet and had an easy game."

Source: DSG