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Tottenham Hotspur v Everton: Preview
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp insists man-of-the-moment Gareth Bale is "not for sale" ahead of the home clash with Everton.
The Wales international is still basking in his sensational San Siro hat-trick against Inter Milan on Wednesday that elevated him to superstar status overnight.
"He'll look back on that, surely, in years to come - and what an achievement," said Redknapp, who hopes the 21-year-old recovers from his amazing exploits in time for the game with Everton.
"He's tired, the kid," Redknapp added. "He had a couple of tough games for Wales and then, obviously, Saturday (against) Fulham, Wednesday night in the San Siro.
"He's nearly empty but, hopefully, there's still a little bit of petrol in there."
Redknapp immediately slapped a not-for-sale sign on Bale after Wednesday night's 4-3 Champions League defeat and he revealed he spoke to chairman Daniel Levy on the subject following the game.
He said: "Gareth has not got a value; he's not for sale. That's the key. I spoke with the chairman the other night."
While Bale may play, others will be rested, with the likes of Rafael van der Vaart, Sandro and Wilson Palacios ready to relieve them.
"I will look to freshen it up a little bit, with one or two changes," Redknapp said. "We have got some players who are desperate to play: the boy Sandro, Wilson Palacios; they're top players and they're available. Rafa's back again."
The game against David Moyes' resurgent Everton comes barely 48 hours after Spurs arrived back from Milan.
Redknapp was philosophical about the 12.45pm kick-off, saying: "It could've been worse; it could've been away. We've got no excuses.
"We're playing a good team. They had a little dodgy start; they've had a dodgy start last couple of years but, every year, David pulls them up.
"They end up either getting into Europe or pushing for European places. He's built a very difficult team to beat. They'll be up there again at the end of the year."
Moyes is hoping his side have finally put behind them their poor start and can continue their winning run at White Hart Lane.
The Toffees did not win any of their first six league games but back-to-back 2-0 victories over Birmingham and derby rivals Liverpool have lifted them up to 11th place in the table.
Moyes said: "We think we're a side who are good enough to be at the top end of the league. We didn't show that in the opening games of the season. We were all a bit surprised by it after the way we'd finished the season before.
"You need to get on runs in this league. We probably played better in other games than we did against Liverpool last week and didn't win. Let's just hope we're on that run that wins us games now."
Everton will have their work cut out to make it three wins in a row, though, with Tottenham again keeping pace with the biggest names in the league.
Moyes is a big fan of the squad Redknapp has assembled at White Hart Lane and he would not be surprised to see Spurs in the top four for a second consecutive season.
"I hear him (Redknapp) saying about how he thinks he's only one or two players away from being right at the top end and I agree with him," said Moyes.
"Tottenham have got some really good players, a good squad, a well-balanced squad, and I think they'll be right there throughout the season."
The danger for Spurs is that they become victims of their own success, with the strain of the Champions League taking its toll on their league campaign.
The hosts will take to the field tomorrow less than 72 hours after their dramatic 4-3 defeat by Inter Milan in the San Siro on Wednesday.
Moyes continued: "The difficulties for Tottenham will be for Harry to think about but the travelling and playing three games in a week can take its toll on your squad.
Everton continue to be dogged by injury problems and this week Leon Osman was added to the list after it was confirmed the ankle injury he picked up against Liverpool will keep him out for between four and six weeks.
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