Jonathan Woodgate could complete a shock comeback from 14 months of injury hell at Blackburn on Wednesday night after Tottenham's injury crisis deepened with the news that Ledley King requires an operation on his groin injury.
King has not played since limping out of the 2-1 victory at Fulham last October. The injury was initially only thought to be minor but Spurs boss Harry Redknapp revealed that the 30-year-old, who has been plagued by knee problems throughout his career, needs an operation and will be out for some time. Redknapp is also without Younes Kaboul (knee), Michael Dawson (suspension) and William Gallas (hip).
The Spurs boss said: "Woodgate is back in my squad which is a massive gamble for me, the club and for him," Redknapp said. "He could start (at Blackburn) . I have got him in my mind to throw him in at the deep end."
He added: "I'll have a think about it and see how he goes in training. He's not played a game of any significance yet but he is in my mind because he is such a fantastic player.
"I'm dreaming that he can come in and be somewhere near what he was straight away, which is not easy. We have some key, very important players missing so we have been pushed into pushing Woodgate in way in advance of what I should be."
Redknapp spent the majority of transfer deadline day holed up in his office at Tottenham's training ground trying to add at least one name to his squad.
In the end there were no arrivals at White Hart Lane, despite bids to sign Charlie Adam, Phil Neville, Villarreal's Giuseppe Rossi and Atletico Madrid duo Sergio Aguero and Diego Forlan.
Spurs are thought to have lodged an audacious club-record Â£38.5million bid for Aguero, but the Argentina forward opted instead to renew his contract with the Spanish side.
Redknapp admitted that his chances of signing the 22-year-old star were very slim.
"There was never a chance of getting him really was there?" he said. "It sounded good but it wasn't going to happen."