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Lazio vs. Tottenham Hotspur.

Lazio vs. Tottenham Hotspur.

Game five of our European adventure, see's what would on paper have always been our toughest game of the group.

Whilst Spurs have done their best to make hard work of Europa qualification, they only stand two points behind the Italians, and could actually top the group should they win tonight. Equally a defeat and a likely Maribor win in Greece, could actually mean that gaining a top two place and therefore qualification into the last 32, would be out of their hands for the final game and the Slovenians, might fancy their chances of beating a perhaps understrength and already qualified Italian side in the final game.

Of course many Spurs fans would see European elimination as a positive thing, however, it would represent a major embarrassment to Andre Villas-Boas, as he has repeatedly stated how important the competition is to him and the club and the fact that he has regularly opted to play strong sides, would be seen as a big blow to the club, even if it actually made their Premiership campaign a little easier.

AVB will again be expected to play a strong side tonight, but I hope there is also common sense in his selection with Sundays game against West Ham in mind. With Adebayor suspended for the weekend, is there a logic in starting with him and leaving Jermain Defoe on the bench? Perhaps playing Adebayor with Clint Dempsey will also give an indication over whether there is any chemistry between the pair? We can all be heartened by the news that Mousa Dembele is back in full training, though AVB has already stated that he isn't match ready therefore is very unlikely to play. That is good news for me.

With Steven Caulker back, I would also like to see a games break for Jan Vertonghen, who has appeared to have been running on empty in the last couple of games, so would we be wise to start with Walker, Dawson, Caulker and Naughton at the back? Similarly in midfield, it would be nice to see some or all of Lennon, Sandro and Bale rested, but for such a key game, can AVB take the risk of weakening the side too much and facing the wrath of the media, should it end badly?

There is the possibility that we could see a midfield with Sigurdsson, Huddlestone, Carroll and Townsend starting and it isn't exactly useless, but it would seem to lack pace, experience and confidence in differing areas, so I feel it is too big an ask to expect to see anything more than a few token changes and lots of crossed fingers that we have fit and fresh faces to entertain West Ham on Sunday...

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Writer:OxfordSpur
Date:Thursday November 22 2012
Time: 12:14PM

Comments

0
Ade is an easy starter since he is banned from the PL. Though Lazio are a tough team I would be shocked if we didn't pull off a win. Not even a draw will do in my book.
spurring you on
22/11/2012 12:38:00
0
Considering that we have lost as many games as we have won this season, why are Spurs fans so confident of a win in the next game? Defoe on bench, Sandro starts, strong side that picks itself.
TonyRich
22/11/2012 12:52:00
0
Ade to start and would like a convincing performance from all today!
mountainyid
22/11/2012 12:54:00
0
Lazio are 5th in Serie A - behind Juve, Inter, Napoli (All CL quality) and Fiorentina. This will be a very tough match - and on our run of form, I'd be estatic with a draw....
mattspurs1982
22/11/2012 12:55:00
0
Carroll, Caulker and Daws to play. Rest Sandro, Verts and retire Gallas
mountainyid
22/11/2012 12:56:00
0
Considering u so confident we will lose why do bother supporting Tony? Or is just the I told u do big head image u are after?
Mix26
22/11/2012 13:02:00
0
I don't understand the calls for Carroll to play this game. I love the guy, but this game requires a big/tough midfield.
TonyRich
22/11/2012 13:03:00
0
Mix26 - I am not confident that we will lose. I am just bemused as to why people ignore current form, results and facts. 83% vote for a Spurs win? Did we win in Maribor? Or Panathanaikos? I am not saying that we won't win, but what is the point of a poll if people do not treat it with some realism?
TonyRich
22/11/2012 13:05:00
0
tonyrich, was Modric a big/tough midfield player, he was never omitted. I'm not saying Carroll is Modric but he does create opportunities.
mountainyid
22/11/2012 13:11:00
0
Ok so u are def part of the Boo Brats then. U would rather rock up and be entertained than provide ur team with motivation and support ? Here is 1 reason for u if u happens to miss the last game with Lazio, I believe we completely dominated the game and were very unfortunate not to win by some margin...
Mix26
22/11/2012 13:12:00
0
The team need to put on a spirited performance tonight. Do it for the fans, 5 fans in particular.
VexSpur
22/11/2012 13:19:00
0
Mix26 - I never boo. I don't like booing. But I want to see better performances. I watched the Lazio game. Spurs did ok in that game, but I feel that Italian teams come for an away point. At home they will be a different kettle of fish.
TonyRich
22/11/2012 13:24:00
0
Are you being bullied Mix26? You seem to be trying to confront Tony R for no good reason.
Love totty
22/11/2012 13:39:00
0
mountainyid - Modric was a seasoned international before he joined us. Carroll is a 20 year old with incredibly limited experience. He is a creative type of player, but it is asking a lot to expect him to hit ground running. He looked fine vs Arsenal though I must admit, and does look like he possibly could hack it.
TonyRich
22/11/2012 13:42:00
0
Love totty - its ok. People often mistake my outlook as not supporting my team. I support my team as much as anyone here, and I will be there next week against a resurgent Liverpool. Like I said, I don't boo....but I might make an exception for Mr Suarez!!!
TonyRich
22/11/2012 13:46:00
0
tonyrich - point taken, i'm just thinking the only way to gain experience is to play and I'd rather keep him at Spurs than out on loan again. Looking forward to tonights game. I think the players will want to prove something after the loss against Le Arse
mountainyid
22/11/2012 14:07:00
0
Carroll is a good prospect but he is not ready as a 1st team choice... nearly everyone goes on about his great passes as if thats all a midfielder has to do.... the same thing was said about THudd 3-4yrs ago and fans are just NOW starting to realise his great passes dont make up for his many flaws as an alround athlete.... Carroll will eventuallly go and play regular football for a mid-table club or as a squad player for a bigger club.
Viyyash-Ramosh
22/11/2012 14:12:00
0
A draw would be an incredible result I feel. The atmosphere will be intimidating so I'd go for as much experience as possible at first at least. The match at WHL is no gauge for this one, Lazio played for the draw and to be honest we never looked like breaking them down. Tonight has to disciplined with enough attacking threat to keep them from pinning us back.
Love totty
22/11/2012 14:14:00
0
If I were AVB I wouldn't invest much into this game (I know he will though). We have PL to worry about and should beat WH as a priority. Even if we fancy EL so much we can still beat Panathinaikos at home and qualify. That would seem reasonable, wouldn't it? The damage we can do today is play regulars and get them morally and physically exhausted before the weekend. The truth is we are not going to win against Lazio in Rome, so why bother? Be rational.
Moscovite
22/11/2012 14:53:00
0
Not to mention the condition we will be in when we play Liverpool.
Moscovite
22/11/2012 14:54:00
0
BTW before everyone jumps at me: when I say "don't bother" I don't mean don't try to win. What I mean is play youngsters and rest our regulars. Young players still should be motivated enough to give them a proper fight. Plus it's another opportunity to look at our team options before matches that really matter.
Moscovite
22/11/2012 15:03:00
0
On a side note, who are those people that voted for Spurs win? 50% of all voters. Every second fan. No seriously I want to see these delusional humans. If these numbers are real our fanbase is a joke.
Moscovite
22/11/2012 15:09:00
0
So Dembele travels for the benefit of the training sesh. Parker has resumed light training. Good news on the whole. Tonight i would like to see Caroll and Falque play, Caulker also. I would imagine this is a game Lazio will go all out to win so we need some pace to hit them on the break. I have no idea how this one will turn out results wise...i just hope we give it our all. Would be great to see Ade to bag a couple. Still trying to look forward to the game...just a bit *****ed off about whats happened. COYS.
SpursOne2
22/11/2012 15:13:00
0
moscovite - i believe the site polls are not to be taken too seriously, or am I delusional? I haven't voted but if I voted for a spurs win it would be because I wanted it, not because I believed it.
mountainyid
22/11/2012 15:43:00
0
Tottenham (probable): Lloris; Walker, Gallas, Caulker, Vertonghen; Livermore, Huddlestone; Lennon, Dempsey, Bale; Adebayor
chrishove123
22/11/2012 15:43:00
0
or should I say...because I wanted to believe it!
mountainyid
22/11/2012 15:44:00
0
Tottenham (I would like) Lloris, Walker, Dawson, Caulker, Naughton, Huddlestone, Carroll, Falque, Bale, Dempsey, Adebayor.
mountainyid
22/11/2012 15:47:00
0
Just read some Spurs fans were attacked by 'Ultras' in Italy. 9 reported injured. I think the atmosphere is the stadium today is going to be very hostile. Hope are fans stay safe!
mountainyid
22/11/2012 15:54:00
0
walker dawson calker naughton huddlestone sandro falque siggy bale adebeyor
redknappslayer
22/11/2012 15:58:00
0
I agree with TR (as usual) and Moscovite, this is not a must win game, but 2 me West Ham is, I would be happy with draw 2day.
Ossie
22/11/2012 16:03:00
0
This can get real ugly. With Adebayor as the main target for abuse and a weak ref anything can happen. Just hope that the players and fans stay safe during the game. One incident is enough!
dannylane
22/11/2012 16:07:00
0
Thought Sandro did not travel?! Anyway I would go with Lloris, Walker, Caulker, Verts, Naughton, Lennon, Huddlestone, Carroll, Bale, Dempsey, Adebayor. Lets try and make something out of this competition and we can worry about Spam after!
El Jefe
22/11/2012 16:10:00
0
I agree that AVB MUST rest Vertonghen & also give Dawson more game time - as Gallas must be dropped. With one eye on the weekend, Adebayor, Dempsey & Siggurdson must also play. Worth giving Smith a game at full back too - as can't do much worse than Walker. For Sentimental reasons - play Carlo in goal :)
Windlespur
22/11/2012 16:11:00
0
Cudicini, Smith, Naughton, Dawson, Caulker, Carrol, Sandro, Bale (1st half only), Lennon, Ade, Dempsey. Good team, gives some opportunities, balanced, attack minded & rests key players for Weekend.
Windlespur
22/11/2012 16:14:00
0
Maybe Siggurdsson in to rest Bale or Lennon.
Windlespur
22/11/2012 16:15:00
0
ossie - second that, West Ham is a much bigger game....if we're going to play Brad again he can play here...other wise Lloris, Walker Dawson, Caulker, Naughton, Carroll, Thud, Gylfi, Falque, Ade, Dempsey...give the boys a run out...
shedboy2
22/11/2012 16:17:00
0
Somehow the game doesn't matter so much, just let's get it played, and get our guys out of there and home, hopefully without any more casualties.
Frank
22/11/2012 16:18:00
0
Windlespur- I'm not to bothered about this game but imo Carlo shouldn't be anywhere near a spurs 1st 11...what's happened to Gomes? play him if he does well we might even get a couple of quid back....
shedboy2
22/11/2012 16:19:00
0
Mixed feelings over this game, yes i want us to win, that's being a spurs fan, but i would rather win on sunday, resting the right players, but AVB wants to do well in all cups, so who's going to play? As for the ''shi7'' that went down in the early hours, this is not the first time it's happened and Rome is known as ''stab city'' your find our supporters are not the first to have this happen to them and won't be the last. Just hope the game is played without any more flash points during and after the match. Come back safe it's a football match not a war and if it was a war the italians would run like phuck, just like the last time.
spu 4 life
22/11/2012 16:35:00
0
oh and more good news, Bentley returns in January his loan spell is up.
spu 4 life
22/11/2012 16:38:00
0
Shedboy - hilarious comment 'Carlo shouldn't be anywhere near a Spurs 1st 11, play Gomes'. Firstly, I agree, but we should not be fielding our first 11, secondly, Cuddicini in Rome is a nice gesture (call me sentimental) & Gomes the Clown should not be anywhere near of first 11, 2nd or 3rd come to that.
Windlespur
22/11/2012 16:51:00
0
Carroll plays, as does Vertonghen, Lloris, Bale and Ade, seems like we playing a strong team, Dawson on bench
Ossie
22/11/2012 17:10:00
0
Our starting team tonight is: Lloris, Walker, Caulker, Vertonghen, Naughton, Sandro, Carroll, Sigurdsson, Bale, Dempsey and Adebayor
what_sux
22/11/2012 17:12:00
0
And our subs: Cudicini, Dawson, Livermore, Lennon, Dembele, Huddlestone and Defoe
what_sux
22/11/2012 17:12:00
0
Tumbs up for our line-up! Dempsey is the only one I would not play, but we need a fresh Defoe against West Ham, and maybe Dempsey can redeem himself. Maybe would have played Livermore instead of Sandro to get fresh Sandro against West Ham.
Jables
22/11/2012 17:18:00
0
Decent team, looking forward to the game, hope we play OK as been pretty boring watching us so far play away in this competition. Result is most important but would be nice to get a decent performance aswell!
El Jefe
22/11/2012 17:21:00
0
Well impressed with that team .....Siggy & Dempsey still need to impress & Lennon rightfully dropped ,been poor for a very long time imo .

The safety of fans is more important than any result ,so lets hope today we have both .
big cockeral
22/11/2012 17:28:00
0
Buzzing-full of Austrian coffee and chocolate, just got in from work, Ms Doc's on cooking duty and I can't wait for kick off! COYS! There's a chance we might do well - Lazio will be out to attack and generally we've had better results when counter-attacking this season. Hope all our supporters get back ok - remember it's not 'Italiens' that attacked them, but a bunch of nutters. We've got em here, too. Just think it's about time FIFA / EUFA did something about this. Anyway, COYS!
DocHotspurs
22/11/2012 17:41:00
0
Lennon has not been poor for a very long time at all, infact he was one of our better players in the first 4 or 5 weeks
HuddersfieldYiddo
22/11/2012 17:59:00
0
Heard Dempsey was playing but have not seen him. Shame we have no central midfield these days. Sandro is a good blocker but for attack the total reliance is on Bale and Lennon...and Lennon is not playing. Another dull game looking like a defeat or draw at best
Forever Spurs
22/11/2012 18:42:00
0
Awful defending from us again! I'm starting to get very very afraid now. If not for Lloris we'd be 2-0 down. Caulker/Vertonghen need to do better and Naughton needs to pass the ball faster. Our goal was wrongfully ruled as an offside. I've had enough of Dempsey. He's just useless, constantly giving the ball away.
Jables
22/11/2012 18:49:00
0
another good goal not given, what a joke.
topspur53
22/11/2012 18:49:00
0
lloris playing well, some really shocking decisions from the ref though. another fine goal disallowed and all the small decisiond going against us, while we were down to 10 for about ten minutes because of their ridiculous bureaucracy. we need to step up for the second half though. would like to see siggy more central as dempsey still not delivering
Guernman
22/11/2012 18:50:00
0
dirty coward wops
duckworth
22/11/2012 18:53:00
0
Ridiculous - perfectly good goal disallowed again! Lloris brilliant apart from his kicking, kept us in this without a shadow of a doubt! Demps and Siggy playing to type, poor, poor, poor! Defence all over the place tbh, perhaps we do need Kaboom back centrally after all!
El Jefe
22/11/2012 18:55:00
0
Guys, where are you watching? Is this game on TV? Can't find it.
Moscovite
22/11/2012 18:56:00
0
itv 4 uk.
Edinburgh Spur
22/11/2012 18:57:00
0
Siggy & Dempsey are again proving to be shockingly bad buys
Not sure how Carroll gets so many rave reviews ,looks another Jamie O` Hara to me .
Got to get some quality in the January sales .Still expect Spurs to win with Caulker & Defoe scoring

lloris proving to be a very good buy & i hope he keeps being our number 1 for the rest of the season in every game .He needs to settle but that can only come with games
big cockeral
22/11/2012 18:57:00
0
Moscovite ITV4
big cockeral
22/11/2012 18:58:00
0
Lennon for Siggy, Defoe for Demps and maybe Dawson for Naughton and move Verts to LB. Take the game to them for the 2nd half instead of sitting back and allowing them to come onto us - will just be a matter of time before they score and then we'll have less time to do anything and have to chase it. Pre-empt the near inevitable and go for it atleast thats what I would like anyway!
El Jefe
22/11/2012 18:59:00
0
Thanks everyone. I checked ITV1 and Channel 5 didn't see it and gave up. Got it now, COYS!
Moscovite
22/11/2012 19:02:00
0
I'm afraid we he have to bring in Lennon cause Dempsey has been utter trash......Give Sigurdsson just about 25 minutes to play behind Ade wih Bale and Lennon on the sides...then replace him with Defoe if he is not effective maybe even risk Dembele....
dcruzer
22/11/2012 19:02:00
0
I thought level was onside....linesman frightened cos its home crowd!!!!Dempsey and Siggy what a shocking waste of money. Carroll is a very prety footballer but is not or ever will be a Modric.....50% of his passes go backwards (at least Samways passed sidewards) We shall miss Ade for the next 3 games.Bring on Defoe for Dempsey and Lennon for Siggy.Walker is still a mystery sometimes good sometimes shocking.Verts,Caulker,Sandro and Lloris ...great.Bale's goal was 100% a goal.
wentworth
22/11/2012 19:05:00
0
Ade plays with his back to goal and not the goal side of defenders, Defoe likes to play into space behind defenders. For me we need both on to give us variety and give defenders something to think about and our players the chance to play early balls for runs. We have become a vary predictable team so now can't score goals yet will always concede
Forever Spurs
22/11/2012 19:10:00
0
Very odd playing Ade as right wing
Forever Spurs
22/11/2012 19:12:00
0
Not sure why Adebayor is utilised as a right winger providing crosses. Shouldn't he be playing in the box instead? Bring on Lennon.
Moscovite
22/11/2012 19:13:00
0
0:0 is written all over it
Moscovite
22/11/2012 19:17:00
0
Maybe AVB is trying the opposite of his usual tactic. Starting defensively and then putting quicker attacking players on late in the game? All could come undone if a goal is lost though
Forever Spurs
22/11/2012 19:19:00
0
ouch...nearly that goal for Lazio I was dreading as on recent evidence we will not come back
Forever Spurs
22/11/2012 19:20:00
0
we are the tottenham we are the best we are the tottenham so ***** of the rest united,west ham,liverpool
duckworth
22/11/2012 19:23:00
0
Defoe and Lennon On, Sigurdsson and Dempsey Off. Game on!
VexSpur
22/11/2012 19:24:00
0
Do we have a player who can pass the ball forward to a teammate?
Jables
22/11/2012 19:24:00
0
Our highline will be the fall of us eventually. As soon as AVB realizes that we will start playing better.
Jables
22/11/2012 19:25:00
0
We're playing like England: can't pass or hold the ball.
Moscovite
22/11/2012 19:33:00
0
Noooooo, too early to bring Dembele in! That's just risking his hip injury to come back.
Jables
22/11/2012 19:34:00
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