Writer: Chris Baldwin
Date:Saturday October 18 2008
19th October 2008
Stoke return from the two week international break with the visit of bottom placed Spurs to the Brit. The Potters first six pointer of the season will be a good test of whether their dream of avoiding the drop can be a reality. With another full house, there will be no shortage of support for the Potters and fans have shown that they more than capable of helping to create a formidable atmosphere for visiting teams.
Tony Pulis fully expects goalless striker, Dave Kitson, to end the drought before too long. He told the official site: 'The biggest thing we're hoping for is that Dave gets off the mark and scores a goal'.
Ricardo Fuller may start from the bench after he played twice for Jamaica in the last week and scored the winner against Mexico. This will mean a start for Mamady Sidibe alongside Kitson up front.
Stoke's new star performer, Ab Faye, faces a late fitness test after sustaining a groin injury whilst playing for Senegal and may start with fellow countryman, Ibrahima Sonko who has also returned, along with Salif Daio, from international duty.
Liam Lawrence is still suffering from an ankle injury after tripping over his dog and was an early doubt after failing to return to full training this week.
The pressure is building on the former Reading player who picked up the onerous tag of the Potters' most expensive player after his £5.5m transfer in the summer.
If he copes well with the pressure and manages a goal, we'll hopefully see the floodgates open in future.
Spurs are the shock of the season so far with no wins to show for their efforts and languishing in bottom place with just the one point. They're struggling to come to terms with the loss of Berbatov and Keane to Man United and Liverpool respectively, but the pundits fully expect them to get it together before too long - but this Sunday is not the day for that and a win for Stoke will undoubtedly heap further pressure on manager, Juande Ramos.
Striker, Roman Pavlyuchenko will face a late fitness test after tearing ligaments two weeks ago, but this match may come a week too soon. Skipper, Ledley King will play despite suffering from a knee problem.
Whether Lennon plays will depend on how Ramos believes he can cope with the height of the Stoke players, but there's no doubt that the lightening winger could cause some problems
This is Spurs' first visit to the Brit and the first match between the two teams since 1985.
Sunday 26th October: Manchester City (away) kick-off: 3pm
Date:Saturday October 18 2008
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