AVB: We can cope without Adebayor

  • Last Updated: November 19 2012, 8:18 GMT

Andre Villas-Boas is backing his Tottenham squad to cope with the absence of striker Emmanuel Adebayor for the next three matches.

Emmanuel Adebayor: Sent off at Arsenal
Emmanuel Adebayor: Sent off at Arsenal

Adebayor scored but was then sent off for a poor challenge on Arsenal's Santi Cazorla as the Gunners won the north London derby 5-2 on Saturday.

With Harry Kane on loan at Norwich, Jermain Defoe is the only recognised striker Villas-Boas has at his disposal for the next three Barclays Premier League games, but he is not worried about the situation.

"Do we have enough firepower? Yes. We have one of the league's top scorers in Jermain Defoe," Villas-Boas said.

"Obviously recently we have been playing with Ade and he's been excellent, so we understand that he's one less option; one very important player but we have to adapt without him.

"Ade and Defoe have flourished well in the past and they know each other very well so to not have that will be hard to take, but the good thing is that the games against West Ham, Liverpool and Fulham are in one week so the player can be back quickly."

Villas-Boas raised more than a few eyebrows when he said he thought Spurs were in control of the north London derby from start to finish.

Although the scoreline flattered the Gunners slightly, Tottenham never looked like catching Arsenal up after the dismissal of Adebayor and their defending was very poor at times.

The Tottenham boss remained defiant about his team's performance after the match.

"It was a game that went well for us so we are proud of our players," the 35-year-old said.

"Obviously, at 3-1 with 10 men, you have nothing to lose, so you have to have a go and I think they incarnated that spirit, particularly after the 4-1, where they never put their arms down."

With Spurs now six points off fourth place, the next four games could turn out to be crucial for Villas-Boas' side.

The former Chelsea manager has seen his team booed off on several occasions this season, but he has urged Spurs supporters to keep the faith.

"I think the fans should be proud of the players," Villas-Boas said.

"There can't be a booing situation when the players play with this passion and emotion and a desire to invert things.

"Our league position isn't good at the moment but it doesn't mean we can't turn it around.

"When you are poor, it can do damage, but when you play like we did against Arsenal I don't think it can be."

Villas-Boas hopes he will be helped by the return of long-term injury victims Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Scott Parker and Mousa Dembele.

"Hopefully we can have a couple of players back from injury in the next coming weeks," he said.


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