We’ve already played Rovers once this season, beating them 4-0 at their place in the Worthington Cup, and they gave us a tough time in that match until they had a player sent off.
That changed the course of the game and handed the initiative to us but before then it had been an even contest. We will certainly need to be at our best if we are to continue our assault on this particular competition.
Which is why it was so important to get back on the winning track by getting a great result against Leicester last Saturday. It was another potentially tricky game but the boys coped very well on the day.
We could easily have slipped up but approached it in the right manner and were rewarded with the points. Leicester are fighting for their lives and they could have gone ahead, but we managed to get our noses in front and looked comfortable until the final 10 minutes.
That was when they decided to give it a real go and put us under a bit of pressure. I must give credit to Neil Sullivan who pulled off a magnificent save to prevent City drawing level late on.
He’d had very little to do for 80 minutes and was then beaten by a deflected free-kick which he could do nothing about. But he stayed focussed and that point-blank save was vital in keeping us ahead. From that moment, we tightened things up and came away with the points which we fully deserved.
It was a strange game because at 2-0 we were comfortable, but you just know that one goal for the opposition changes the game dramatically and gives them the belief that they can rescue something from the match. So credit to the team for refusing to let Leicester sneak a draw.
I’d like to give a mention to Ledley King and Darren Anderton for getting into the England squad and to congratulate all our players who earned international
call-ups this week.
Ledley deserves special recognition and it was such a shame he had to pull out of the game late on Wednesday. By all accounts he was due to make his debut, but I’m sure if he keeps performing for us as well as he is doing at present, his time will come. To force his way into the England set-up in only his first full season in the Premier League is a great achievement and fully justified.
He has been outstanding since the start of this campaign and it shows when the crowd sing his name that everyone appreciates him at Tottenham. He’s been playing like an experienced centre-half which is hard to do and can take a lot of players six or seven seasons to achieve.
Obviously Darren has been in the squad before and looks like he’s got a secure place. It was disappointing injury kept him out but he had a tight hamstring and from our club’s point of view, it was important he pulled out of the squad. We’ve got some very big games coming up and Darren’s a vital part of our progress this season.
It’s great to see that Sven Goran Eriksson is not just interested in playing players but also looking after them for the benefit of their club football in the long run. That has to be applauded.
Enjoy today’s game.
We welcome Tranmere to the Lane today for what will be a difficult FA Cup tie.