Players can fill Gareth Bale void at Tottenham insists Gylfi Sigurdsson
Bale was carried off injured last night
Friday 05 April 2013
Gylfi Sigurdsson is sure that Tottenham's “hungry” fringe players will step up and fill the huge void left by Gareth Bale's absence.
Bale will today undergo a scan on his right ankle, which was twisted in a challenge from David Degen in the dying seconds of last night's 2-2 Europa League draw against Basle.
Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas said last night that he hoped the 23-year-old would be missing for just two games, although the fact that the winger's ankle was bent almost at a right angle to his leg made the injury look a lot more serious.
To say Bale is an important player for Spurs would be a massive understatement. The Welshman has bagged 22 goals for the Londoners this season, many of them truly exquisite strikes.
His performances have meant the likes of ex-Swansea man Sigurdsson, Clint Dempsey and Lewis Holtby have had to spend much of the season on the bench.
The Icelandic forward, who like Dempsey, enjoyed a prolific year with his former club last season, admits Bale's injury is a huge blow, but he is sure Spurs have enough strength in reserve to ensure the team qualify for the Champions League.
"If we are missing Gareth for a couple of games it is a huge loss for us. but there are many players on the bench who are hungry to come in and do well," said Sigurdsson.
"When someone gets injured someone has to step up and fill his place.
"It will not be easy with Gareth because of how well he has been doing this year, but someone needs to come in and do well for the team."
A medical report on Bale last night described the forward as being in "severe pain" because of the tackle. The fact that the swelling has subsided enough for the former Southampton man to be able to go for a scan on the problem is a good sign, though.
Unfortunately for Villas-Boas, Aaron Lennon and William Gallas also came off last night with knee and calf problems respectively. They will both have scans today.
With Jermain Defoe sidelined by a pelvic problem, the pressure is on Sigurdsson to start reproducing the kind of form that saw him bag seven goals in 18 starts from midfield for Swansea last term.
The 23-year-old initially struggled to break in to Tottenham's starting XI following his summer switch from Hoffenheim, but he has scored four in his last seven for club and country.
"I think I am back to my best now even though I am not playing in my favourite position," Sigurdsson said.
"I am playing on the wing, but I am happy so long as I am playing.
"If you get a few successive games you are going to get in to your stride and once you start playing more you get more confidence and then you can push on."
Despite the worries over injuries to key players, Tottenham will take solace from the fact that they will move seven points clear of Arsenal this weekend if they beat Everton and the Gunners lose at West Brom.
The game that follows four days later - the second leg in Switzerland - looks a difficult one, though.
Spurs will have to become the first team to beat Basle at St. Jakob-Park in the Europa League this season to progress to the semi-finals.
The Swiss champions controlled much of last night's game, wasting numerous chances to kill the game off after Valentin Stocker and Fabian Frei gave the visitors a first-half lead.
Emmanuel Adebayor's fifth of the season and Sigurdsson's deflected effort levelled the tie, leaving the team confident of advancing despite their disadvantage because of the away goals rule.
"It will suit us that we are chasing the game because we are an attacking team," Sigurdsson added.
"Hopefully we will go there and get some goals.
"It's going to be really tough going there, but we are full of confidence and hopefully we can do it."
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