Pascal Chimbonda has chance to repair old wounds at Tottenham

18 February 2009 10:49
The 29-year-old angered supporters when he stormed down the tunnel after being substituted in last season's Carling Cup final, and fans also remember him missing the penalty against PSV Eindhoven less than two weeks later to send Spurs crashing out of Europe.

His summer move hardly generated the outrage that Dimitar Berbatov and Robbie Keane's departures did, but Chimbonda is back after an unhappy six months at Sunderland where he failed to settle.

And against Shakhtar Donetsk in the first leg of Spurs' Uefa Cup last-32 tie, the Guadeloupe-born defender is in line to make his first start since rejoining the club.

"I just felt that Chimbonda gives us cover all over," manager Harry Redknapp said.

"I was looking for somebody who could play everywhere, that's going to be important.

"He has energy, gets forward and is an attacking full-back. He was outstanding at centre-back in his last game for Sunderland so can play across the back four.

"I always liked him and tried to get him when he was at Wigan, I think Chelsea were in for him too when he was in the Premier League team of the year."

Chimbonda gets his chance at RSK Olimpiyskyi against Ukraine champions as Vedran Corluka is cup-tied, while Alan Hutton is out injured and Ledley King is only just returning from a hamstring complaint.

King also struggles to play matches in quick succession as his knee swells up but Redknapp is hopeful of the centre-back being fit for the Carling Cup final against Manchester United a week on Sunday.

"I'm hopeful he'll be okay," Redknapp said. "It's sort of day-to-day.

"He's had a hamstring problem, he's got that knee problem, but he's a fantastic player when he's fit. We're just hoping that he continues his recovery.

"We'll monitor ahead of the weekend and we'll see how he looks next week."

Elsewhere, Keane, Jermain Defoe and Roman Pavlyuchenko are also cup-tied so Darren Bent is likely to start in attack against the Ukrainian champions, who have not played for two months.

Jamie O'Hara and Luka Modric have picked up knocks. The latter did not travel to Donetsk, and neither did Carlo Cudicini, Jonathan Woodgate, Aaron Lennon, or Wilson Palacios"

Source: Telegraph