Soldado: No easy games
Tottenham striker Roberto Soldado is wary of facing a Newcastle side high on morale following their recent victory over Chelsea.
The Magpies recorded a 2-0 win at home to Jose Mourinho's side last weekend and deservedly collected three points from a difficult fixture, with Tottenham held to a goalless draw at Everton.
Now Newcastle travel to face Spurs at White Hart Lane on Sunday with Soldado aware that Alan Pardew's men will have momentum on their side.
"We watched their game against Chelsea," he said.
"In the first half, they defended well and then attacked more in the second half. It was a good win for them. I'm sure it will be a good match on Sunday.
"I think Newcastle will be quite confident and it won't be an easy match for us."
Summer signing Soldado has yet to fully adapt to the Barclays Premier League but he has struck three match-winning penalties already this season.
Spurs have found it a challenge to break teams down at White Hart Lane as the majority of visitors look to shut up shop in an attempt to stifle the wealth of attacking options available to manager Andre Villas-Boas.
Soldado's late penalty winner against Hull in their last home game was such an occasion and, despite Spurs currently sitting in the top four, the former Valencia forward is taking nothing for granted.
"You don't focus on where teams are in the league, you just go out and give 100 per cent in every match," he said. "It doesn't matter where teams are in the league, they give everything. There are no easy matches in the Premier League.
"If we manage to win, we'll continue to make progress and build on the draw at Everton."
Spurs go into the game on the back of a 2-1 victory over Sheriff Tiraspol which saw them qualify from their Europa League group.
Villas-Boas made eight changes for the European tie but a number of players, including Soldado, are expected to return to the starting line-up against Newcastle.
One player who definitely will start is goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
Villas-Boas was criticised in some quarters for keeping the France captain on the pitch at Everton after he was knocked unconscious following a collision with Romelu Lukaku.
But the Portuguese manager defended his decision and confirmed Lloris will return on Sunday having sat out the Europa League success on Thursday evening.
Newcastle skipper Fabricio Coloccini could return to the starting line-up having missed the last four games with a groin injury.
Midfielder Cheick Tiote, who limped of against Chelsea last weekend with a muscle strain, is expected to resume at White Hart Lane.
Alan Pardew will take Newcastle to Tottenham preaching optimism after the latest twist in a topsy-turvy season.
The 52-year-old and his players dispelled some of the clouds hanging over St James' Park in the wake of a derby defeat by Sunderland and a Capital One Cup exit at the hands of Manchester City with a surprise win over title contenders Chelsea.
That left Newcastle sitting in ninth place in the table ahead of Sunday's difficult trip to White Hart Lane, five points adrift of the top six and six clear of the drop zone, and with their fans not quite sure how to assess the season to date.
However, Pardew, who was once again linked with the vacant manager's job at former club Crystal Palace on Friday, is confident progress has been made and, with successive home games against Norwich and West Brom to come after the international break, is convinced there is more to come.
He said: "There are a lot of clubs who would envy our position as we sit here today and we have to always think that our glass is half-full rather than half-empty, which I think sometimes we do up here.
"I think we are in better shape than we have been given credit for. But this week, I have seen a lot more positive press about our players, who have been terrific. We have had some great performances.
"This is the end of a difficult period, in my view, of games for us because then we have got two home games and it could put us in a great position if we get a win against Spurs, or a draw even, so it's an important game for our league position."