Saturday, February 8, 2014

Tottenham - Everton Preview: Traore set for Toffees debut

 Phil Jagielka Roberto Soldado Everton v Tottenham Hotspur Barclays Premier League 03112013
Lacina Traore is set to make his Everton debut in Sunday's fixture against Tottenham at White Hart Lane.

Following his loan move from Monaco last month, the 23-year-old forward has been sidelined with a hamstring injury but Roberto Martinez confirmed on Friday that the Ivorian has passed a fitness test and could start in attack with Romelu Lukaku still out with an ankle problem.

Seamus Coleman is also expected to return from a hamstring injury for Everton, while Barcelona loanee Gerard Deulofeu may also feature after recovering from the same issue.

If Liverpool lose at home to Arsenal on Saturday, Roberto Martinez's side can leapfrog them into fourth with a win, despite their 4-0 defeat at Anfield in January.

Everton responded from that defeat with a 2-1 victory over Aston Villa last week as goals in the last 20 minutes from Steven Naismith and Kevin Mirallas saw them record their 300th Premier League win.

Tottenham, who sit sixth, also have top-four ambitions and have scored in all eight league matches since Tim Sherwood took charge in December.

And Everton defender Phil Jagielka is looking forward to the challenge of keeping Spurs quiet.

"Pretty much every weekend somebody is going to drop points [in the race for fourth] because they are playing against another team who is alongside them," he told the club's official website.

"He [Sherwood] has gone out and tried to put a few more attacking players out there, whether that's because of the squad he has got to choose from or his mentality."

Everton have not won at White Hart Lane since November 2008 but will take encouragement from Tottenham's poor home record this season.

Spurs have won just three of their last 10 league matches at home and were hammered 5-1 by Manchester City in their last fixture at White Hart Lane.

Tottenham were held to a 1-1 draw at Hull City last week but could be boosted by the returns of Andros Townsend and Mousa Dembele.

Midfield pair Erik Lamela (thigh) and Sandro (calf) and defender Vlad Chiriches (back) are set to remain on the sidelines.

The meeting between the two sides in November ended in a goalless stalemate at Goodison Park in a match that was overshadowed by Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris returning to the field despite suffering concussion.

Tottenham - Everton Preview: Traore set for Toffees debut Rating: 4.5 Posted by: Unknown


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