Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

P Is for Pressure

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

P Is for Pressure

Article excerpt

Byline: By Bernie Slaven

I can recommend three essentials for Boro fans at the Riverside on Saturday.

Don't forget your Prozac, your painkillers and a potty.

This is a massive, massive game, and there'll be a few fingernails bitten away, and probably a few finger ends as well.

It's also a must-win game for Boro and that's where the pressure comes in.

If we don't beat Spurs, then we can say goodbye to Europe because we won't get anything at Man City.

We've got to do it on Saturday, and I have a feeling that Spurs will be thinking the same way.

They could probably get away with a draw, but that's not their style. I think they'll come here trying to win it.

So, despite the importance of the result, I think it will be an open game - and a cracker.

And, let's face it, with home advantage we have to make it count.

If we show the same bottle that we did at Liverpool, then we've got every chance.

The team worked hard at Anfield and got a great point.

We've got to step up another gear on Saturday because Spurs are really flying.

They got five against Aston Villa last weekend and that's some achievement.

They've got good players right through their side, starting at the back with Robinson, the England goalkeeper.

Ledley King has developed into a quality defender and they've got Carrick and Davies in midfield, both of whom have been strongly linked with interest from Boro in the past.

Up front, Spurs have got three to pick from, because Kanoute, Keane and Defoe are all useful Premiership strikers.

The good thing from my point of view is they don't have any big lads.

Every time we've come up against a big lad we've struggled in the air.

These three pose a different threat because they're very quick and nippy on the ground.

With players like these, Spurs only know one way to play and that's why I can't see them setting their stall out for a draw.

A draw would probably do them, because it would leave them in the driving seat, but it's not their style.

Whichever way they play, we can beat them and we have to build on the run that we have put together.

Steve McClaren will probably not look at making too many changes, though I'd love to see an adventurous line-up. …

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