Capital clash so vital for Liverpool FC, says ex-striker Paul Walsh
Paul Walsh 300 BY common consensus Liverpool and Tottenham have enjoyed wildly contrasting seasons so far. Spurs' scintillating attacking play has blown away rivals at home and abroad, while the Reds have lurched from one crisis to another. However, if Roy Hodgson's men were to triumph at White Hart Lane on Sunday they would move level on points with Harry Redknapp's side. Win and dreams of a top four finish would be re-ignited, lose and Liverpool will remain stranded in mid-table mediocrity. There is no escaping the fact that the stakes are high for the televised showdown in North London. Defeat at Spurs on the opening day of last season set the tone for a miserable campaign and former striker Paul Walsh believes the outcome of the latest meeting between the rivals could have a major impact on what happens over the coming months. 'It's a massive game for both my old clubs,' Walsh said. 'Spurs are flying at the moment. It was a great fightback to win at Arsenal last weekend and they were very impressive against Werder Bremen on Wednesday night. 'To qualify for the last 16 of the Champions League with a game to spare is a great effort and Harry has got them playing well. 'But they have had a few disappointing league results, especially after playing in Europe midweek. After all they beat Inter Milan but then went and lost at Bolton and Harry won't want any more slip ups. 'They will be desperate to push themselves into the top four and they know Liverpool are one of their rivals for those places. 'Liverpool haven't had a great time of it but apart from the defeat at Stoke they have picked up over the past month or so. 'A win at Spurs would really give them the belief that they are capable of challenging for the top four.' Walsh scored 37 goals in 112 appearances for the Reds between 1984 and 1988 after spurning the advances of Manchester United and joining for £700,000 from Luton. Having been hampered by injury and seen his chances restricted by the arrival of John Aldridge and Peter Beardsley, Walsh moved on to Spurs for £500,000 in February 1988. During his four years in the capital the frontman added an FA Cup winners' medal to the league title he won at Anfield. Since the 48-year-old's playing days Tottenham have rarely been seen as a threat to Liverpool but all that's changed. Last season they cashed in on the Reds' troubles to secure Champions League qualification for the first time. It was their highest finish for 20 years and Walsh, who works as a pundit for Sky Sports, believes there's no secret to their progress.
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