Tottenham V Newcastle at White Hart Lane : Match Preview
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Spurs wait on Adebayor
Tottenham will test Emmanuel Adebayor's fitness today before deciding whether he goes straight back in to the starting line-up for the Barclays Premier League clash against Newcastle at White Hart Lane.
Adebayor has been at the African Nations Cup for almost a month, but manager Andre Villas-Boas hopes he will come through the training session as his only other recognised striker Jermain Defoe is out with an ankle injury.
Midfielder Sandro and defender Younes Kaboul (both knee) are unavailable, although the latter will start training again on Monday with a view to being fit in a fortnight.
Villas-Boas hopes his team can build on last weekend's narrow victory at West Brom by recording another win tomorrow that will put the Londoners six clear of Everton, and seven ahead of Arsenal should other results go their way.
"We want to build a gap over the teams that are chasing us and bridge the gap to those at the top," Villas-Boas said.
"It can go either way. Everton have a difficult away fixture (at Manchester United) this weekend, Arsenal have one too (at Sunderland).
"If we want to be able to profit in some way from these two fixtures, we have to get the result against Newcastle.
"We have to do our job."
Midfielder Cheick Tiote could return to the Newcastle squad.
The 26-year-old, who has missed the last five games because he has been on African Nations Cup duty with Ivory Coast, is available once again after his country's quarter-final exit last weekend.
However, Hatem Ben Arfa's return from a hamstring problem has been delayed by a virus which has cost him a week's training, and he is unlikely to be ready for selection until the end of the month.
Alan Pardew admits he will not shake off the fear of relegation until Newcastle's Barclays Premier League status is mathematically assured.
The Magpies have given their survival hopes a significant boost with back-to-back victories over Aston Villa and, in thrilling style, Chelsea in their last two games, and now sit in 15th place on 27 points, six clear of the drop zone.
However, as he prepared for tomorrow's tough trip to in-form Tottenham, Pardew, who had been candid in his admission that the club was in trouble before its influx of January signings, was refusing to get carried away.
Asked if he had genuinely considered the possibility of dropping out of the top flight for the second time in four years, he said: "Of course - and I still will think about it until such time as we have 40 points because it might take 40 this year.
"In the past, 37, 38 has been enough. I have a feeling it won't be this year, so we have got to keep working.
"We are by no means out of the situation we are in."
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