Date:Saturday January 6 2007
Tottenham Hotspur captain and influential centre-back is not available for tomorrow`s FA Cup 3rd round clash with Cardiff City with a foot injury keeping the England international out. King`s absence means that Callum Davenport will keep his place alongside England prospect Michael Dawson unless Jol rotates his squad for the trip.
One other big name absentee is Egyptian Hossam Ghaly after his face collided with the boot of Portsmouth`s Noe Pamarot (formerly of Spurs), the collision left Ghaly missing four of his teeth. Robbie Keane and the dangerous Aaron Lennon are back in full training and could come into contention for recalls to the side. Keane, Defoe and Berbatov are all available for the trip forming a formidable strikeforce for Cardiff to contend with.
Cardiff City have few injury worries after several players are now returned to full fitness. Neil Alexander should continue in goal with his contract issues set to be resolved later next week, but new signing David Forde could appear on the bench for the Bluebirds as reserve 'keeper. Centre-backs Loovens and Purse are both fit, but Kevin McNaughton may not make the game with a hamstring problem. Alan Wright has extended his loan spell so is set to continue in McNaughton`s absence unless Jones opts to switch Kerrea Gilbert to the left to deal with Aaron Lennon and bring teenage full-back Chris Gunter in on the right.
Willo Flood and Paul Parry are both rated 50:50 for the game and if neigher makes the game, then Malvin Kamara, Kevin Cooper or youngster Darcy Blake could all come in on the right side of midfield. City fans are optimistic however that one of Parry / Flood will be available to continue the good form of both players this season.
Tottenham`s form has been poor away from home this season but they are clear favourites to defeat a Cardiff City team yet to climb out of the slump that has seen them slide from 6 points clear at the top of the Championship to eighth place in a matter of weeks. The Bluebirds are without a win in any of the last 10 games, and have drawn their previous 4 games, 3 of which ended goalless. City`s form has improved dramatically in recent weeks, even though the results have still be disappointing. However, some of the confidence and early-season swagger are back on show and at their best Cardiff will give Tottenham a very hard time indeed.
The game is a near sell-out and Ninian Park can be and daunting arena for visiting teams. Rio Ferdinand lists the venue as his most intimidating game and the City fans will be right behind their team against good quality opposition. City narrowly lost 2-1 in the last ever FA Cup game at Highbury last season against Spurs` fierce North London rivals Arsenal and will be looking to go one better this time around.
So come on, support the boys and MAKE SOME NOISE !
Date:Saturday January 6 2007
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