Time to recall Robbie Keane (cough)

If we lose because we fail to defend a Delap throw and a Stoke player headers/bundles the ball in…I'll be gutted. If Palacios and Modric don't soak up the physicality and in-yer-face tempo of their midfield and fail to control and boss the park…I'll be gutted. If Roman fails to make a goal-scoring impact and wastes glorious chance after chance…I'll be gutted. If Bale isn't destroying the flank, powering past opponents…I'll be gutted.

0 points? Gutted. 1 point? Gutted.

Three points? Gutted. Yes, gutted. I want us to not just beat Stoke but to beat them so badly, so emphatically, we're awarded an extra two points just to back away from their bloody broken body. I want them decimated. Smashed up. Ruined.

Wolves. 6 points lost. Stoke. 6 points lost? No thank you very much, no sir, no way.

This isn't a personal thing against Stoke. I actually don't mind them. They don’t annoy me, not really. It was more our fault than there's that we failed to break them down at the Lane earlier this season. Can't expect sides to just play open football because we do. Yeah sure, they've got that cheeky long throw tactic, but they can sometimes play a bit too. Teams with lesser quality always seem to be able to produce massive dollops of effort that can sometimes cause sticky moments for the opposing team visiting their humble home. Opposing teams, regardless of their superior quality on paper, sometimes fail to match the tenacity of the effort a Stoke City possess.

i.e. Tottenham.

People cite our erratic away form. Like the oracle of football predictions, Mark Lawrenson, who has us pegged down to lose 2-1 because he is not convinced by our travels, even though we are 4th and have gained 20 points away from home. Still plenty of improvement can be had, which I suppose can be roughly translated as Spurs being a tad inconsistent. And there are some who are nervous about tomorrow because Stoke will show us no respect and go for our jugular, expecting and forcing a text-book powder-puff collapse from us. Because it's happened before. Wolves away, which was the type of depressing performance that is detrimental to all the positive progression we've made this season.

But as we enter the final 9 games, there is no room for these negatives. These ready-made excuses.

So screw Lawro and stick it up your bollocks if you're not ripping the shirt of your back and slow-clapping 'Oh when the Spurs go marching in…' come Saturday afternoon.

What's that? Defoe has torn his hamstring? Out for a few weeks? Er...oh…fuck. Really? Injured? Christ. Those sonsofbitches footballing Gods have hit the target again. They aim for the most important, most vital of Spurs players and strike them down. Gomes, Woodgate, Modric, Lennon, Huddlestone and now Defoe. Backbone players. All with spells out this term. Add King who can only ever play the equivalent of half a season anyway, and it's enough to bring on an epic twitch spasm.

No idea where the Jenas injury fits in with the above. What's that? A voice in my head? Calling out for JJ? Sad sad times.

And yet we've somehow managed to dig deep and get through it all. But is this now one injury too far? A cruel twist so close to seasons end.

Roman, Crouch, Eidur (yes really)…your time is now. Take down Stoke. Decimate. Smash up. Ruin.


Who am I kidding?

If we score in the 93rd minute, deflected shot off someone's bum having been dominated for 92 minutes, and win it 1-0, I'll gleefully accept the undeserved/lucky three points and move on. One game at a time.

Time to recall Robbie Keane then.

What? He can't be recalled? Celtic have his registration? Bless 'em. At least there's some good news that's come out of today.