January make or break time for Spurs, says Defoe
Tuesday 03 January 2012
Jermain Defoe says that this month will determine whether Tottenham Hotspur are genuine Premier League title contenders. At the halfway point of the season, Harry Redknapp's third-placed side lie just six points behind Manchester rivals, City and United, but with a game in hand on both.
Tottenham, who missed the chance to close the gap even further after conceding a late goal in the 1-1 draw at Swansea on Saturday, begin a crunch period which could define their season with a home match – one of four fixtures at White Hart Lane – against West Bromwich Albion tonight.
Everton, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Wigan Athletic visit north London this month and there is also a potentially pivotal title showdown at Manchester City on 22 January.
When asked if this month would give an indication on how far Tottenham can go this season, the England striker Defoe said: "I think so, especially with the other teams slipping up as well. Some of the results we have just heard – it's unbelievable.
"January is a big month for us and will really determine how far we have come. We have got a lot of home games and that makes a massive difference. But it is looking good for us. It was an opportunity for us at Swansea but it's a difficult place to come. I wouldn't say it was a blip.
"You can't expect to win every game and I am sure a lot of teams will go there and think, 'Yes, we will take the point.' "They are a good side, created chances and were unlucky in the first half. But all our lads are buzzing at the minute.
"All the lads are grafting for each other, there is a good team spirit and everyone believes that we can win every game we play in, so it looks good."
Roy Hodgson's men travel to Tottenham just 48 hours after the 1-0 home defeat to Everton. Defoe thinks the gruelling schedule will take its toll on West Bromwich.
Defoe added: "The good thing is that West Brom played on Sunday so they have got only one day's recovery before playing Tuesday. We have got an extra day – I think that could play a part."
Tottenham midfielder Scott Parker is a doubt with a knee injury.
Latest in Sport
Manchester United transfer news: United given new hope in race for Juan Cuadrado as Barcelona talks stall
Manchester United transfer news: United close in on Arsenal’s Thomas Vermaelen
Manchester City transfer news: Frank Lampard heads to Etihad as pre-New York City FC stopgap
Liverpool transfer news: Brendan Rodgers plans more Anfield signings this summer
Commonwealth Games 2014: Usain Bolt eases Jamaica into men's relay final
- 1 Israel-Gaza conflict: 'When Genocide is Permissible' article removed from The Times of Israel website
- 2 Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness
- 3 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 4 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 5 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
Land for gas: Merkel and Putin discussed secret deal could end Ukraine crisis
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
A new Russian revolution: The cracks are starting to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc