Injury to Lennon Threatens To Derail Spurs' Season, Giovani Dos Santos To Step Up?
Spurs' chances of breaking into the top four have been dealt a massive blow as Aaron Lennon looks set to miss the next month with a groin injury. The news will cause Harry Redknapp a severe headache as Tottenham face Liverpool in a season defining game on January 9th.
Tottenham's last major dip in form coincided with the wingers absence as David Bentley deputised, but he had little effect as the Spurs were easily brushed aside by Arsenal in a 3-0 mauling at the Emirates.
Lennon has been in phenomenal form since the turn of the year, and has forced himself into Fabio Capello's plans after a series of breath-taking performances for Spurs this year.
His form has been such that almost every opponent that Tottenham have faced have had to double up on the winger. When on form, it is almost impossible to play against him, and since Redknapp joined Spurs he has added goals to his game.
A club spokesman said, "He will be out for a few weeks with the tear. It is not good news."
The next league game for Spurs is of huge importance to not only themselves, but for their opponents Liverpool as well.
Rafael Benitez is under intense pressure to guarantee fourth position in the league, and as it stands they are four points behind Tottenham who currently occupy that position. Defeat to the North London team and Benitez would be in the firing line as they would be seven points down.
However, the news that Lennon will be out will boost Liverpool as much as it will demoralise Tottenham.
If the groin strain is a bad a predicted, Lennon will miss Tottenham's next six games.
First up is an FA Cup tie against Peterborough. Redknapp will most likely give Giovani Dos Santos the wide right berth, and hope the Mexican prodigy grasps his chance.
Spurs then travel to Liverpool (A) for that massive game before taking on Hull (H), and Fulham (H).
A trip to Birmingham (A) will not be the easiest of tasks, as the Blues are currently on an 11 game unbeaten run.
Spurs then take on Aston Villa at White Hart Lane on February 6th. This seems the most likely game for Lennon's return if the injury is as bad as feared.
With the nippy winger in the team and firing on all cylinders, Tottenham are a match for most teams. Without him Spurs become a very different proposition.
The bad news is tempered somewhat by the return of Luka Modric from a broken leg after the Croatian play-maker missed 15 weeks of the season.
The news is most definitely a blow to Spurs, and how Redknapp deals with the absence of his most creative player will say much on where Tottenham are in May.
Giovani Dos Santos should be able to toe the line, and in all probability has even greater potential than Lennon, so the next month will be very interesting to rate Spurs without Lennon, and with Giovani.
The young Mexican was signed in a sensational £4.7 million deal from Barcelona last Summer but found it very hard to settle in the English game. Despite the lack of game time, the youngster still helped his country to qualify for the World Cup with some eye catching displays.
After a couple of successful loan periods with Ipswich Town, the starlet was moved back into the first team squad by Redknapp this season. But injury threatened to wreck his chances and David Bentley was brought back in from the cold for a final chance.
However, Redknapp has shown faith and trust in the Mexican starlet and he is now above misfit Bentley in the pecking order.
Without Lennon Tottenham are a different proposition, with Giovani at full tilt they will be something else entirely.
Spurs fans and Redknapp hope that Giovani can become a force and now is his chance to shine.