Combine the weather forecast and the lack of undersoil heating at Bloomfield Road and the chances of Spurs taking on Blackpool this Sunday look minimal. The Seasiders though took a lot of stick when their game against arch sneaky git Nani and his cohorts was called off very early after the blizzards of a few weeks ago. Consequently theyâ€™ll be doing their utmost to make sure this game goes ahead.
Theyâ€™ve got tents over the pitch, theyâ€™ve got locals with shovels, theyâ€™ve got donkeys, theyâ€™ve got the Golden Mile and the Pepsi Max Big One but they wonâ€™t have Charlie Adam whoâ€™ll be serving a one match ban having reached five bookings. So no reunion between him and Alan Hutton, two team mates at Rangers.
Hutton was one of many players pictured after the teamâ€™s Christmas do this week. Disturbing as it is to see Redknappâ€™s wishes countermanded (if indeed they were), it was actually encouraging to see that no-one looked like theyâ€™d had more than the odd tin of Barbican â€“ apart from Ledley of course who once more showed that he either has the drink tolerance of an Mormon elder or a fearsome ability to act the convincing drunk on cue.
Adamâ€™s suspension is a blow to the Seasiders but theyâ€™ve shown many times this season that they have more than enough about them not to let it bother them too much. Their results are better away than at home, theyâ€™ve only won twice, but theyâ€™ve only lost twice too and gave Man City a run for their money in one of those defeats. Vaughan, Varney & Taylor-Fletcher have become household names (sort of) and Holloway has got the best out of DJ Campbell and even Marlon Harewood.
Weâ€™re approaching half way in our season long injury crisis. The return of Defoe and Dawson has been offset by fresh injuries to Jenas, Kaboul, Kranjcar and Gallas. Redknapp can only pick from whatâ€™s available and in midfield and at centre back that might not be much. Key man Van der Vaart will probably not be risked Iâ€™d guess which means again that most likely one or more of Defoe, Pav or Bale need to take on the mantle of goalscorer. Given our inability to keep a clean sheet, theyâ€™ll have to do it more than once as well.
Weâ€™ve only met Blackpool twice in the last twenty years but both games have a footnote in our history. In 1991 a Paul Stewart goal in a howling gale at Bloomfield Rd set us off on our ultimately successful cup run. In 2007 Blackpool were the first opponents for Juande Ramos in his time as manager. Again we beat them and went on to win the cup. So there you go. Whenever we beat Blackpool we go on to win the competition that we played them in. Given that omen and assuming Lee Probert gives the game the go ahead, hereâ€™s to three points on Sunday.
Â By MF
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