Stoke V Spurs at Britannia Stadium : Match Preview

25 April 2014 04:31
Stoke V Spurs - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

Stoke quiz Spurs over Adam 'snub'

Stoke sought assurance from Tottenham that Spurs players will shake the hand of Charlie Adam should he make the starting line-up for Saturday's Barclays Premier League clash.

A rumour surfaced on Friday suggesting some of the visiting side would snub Adam because of ill feeling towards the playmaker.

The Scot has been the instigator of a number of controversial tackles in games against Tottenham and Paulinho was out for a month after being felled by Adam in the reverse fixture in December.

Tottenham complained to the Football Association, who took no action, while Stoke were unhappy with Spurs midfielder Sandro for posting a picture on social media with the message: "Charlie Adam - the beast (Sandro's nickkname) is watching you."

Stoke boss Mark Hughes said: "We've made contact with Spurs to see if there's any truth in it and they assure us there's absolutely nothing. So we'll take it with a pinch of salt.

"We were a little bit taken aback by it. When I read it I thought it was absolute bunkum. We made the call and it just confirmed what we felt anyway.

"Charlie's done really well this year and he's in my thoughts for the game tomorrow certainly. He came on against Cardiff to good effect."

Oussama Assaidi will hope to push for a first Stoke start in two and a half months.

The on-loan Liverpool winger, who has scored four goals this season, returned last week from knee ligament damage as a substitute in the 1-1 draw against Cardiff.

Defender Robert Huth (knee) and winger Matthew Etherington (back) are the Potters' only absentees.

Tottenham will be able to call upon captain Michael Dawson.

The defender has not featured since March 30 due to a hamstring complaint but is back in the squad, although Jan Vertonghen (ankle) and Etienne Capoue (foot) remain absent.

The pair are not ready despite returning to training this week, while Kyle Walker (pelvis) and Erik Lamela (back) are again absent.

Tim Sherwood has ordered Tottenham's players to shake hands with Adam amid reports some may blank the Stoke midfielder after he injured Paulinho earlier in the campaign.

The Brazil international was forced off with what turned out to be ankle ligament damage after being clattered by Adam in December's 3-0 win over the Potters.

The challenge was the latest in a number of incidents involving Spurs players, with the Scotland midfielder previously clashing with Gareth Bale on two occasions and once with Scott Parker.

Head coach Sherwood dismissed such talk ahead of the trip to the Britannia Stadium, insisting there will be no such issues between his players and Adam this weekend.

"The players will do their duty and shake hands along that line to show respect to their opposition," he said of the player whose starting spot is far from assured anyway.

"I haven't heard the boys talking about Charlie Adam at all. They're just concentrating on the game. I don't think it's a problem.

"I would hate to think that every time I tackled someone they'd never shake my hand - I would never have had a handshake.

"Listen, Charlie is a combative player and he tries to do his job the best that he possibly can.

"I like my players to do the same and sometimes you're going to mistime them, but just get on with the game. It's part and parcel of it, unfortunately."

Source: PA