ADEBAYOR SPURRED ON BY RETURN TO EMIRATES
EMMANUEL ADEBAYOR is hopeful of being fit for his first return to the Emirates as a Tottenham player.
The ex-arsenal hitman, who angered Gunners fans when he ran the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of them after scoring for Manchester City, has been struggling with a knee injury.
He missed the FA Cup clash with Stevenage at the weekend but trained yesterday and is expected to receive a hostile welcome if he makes the derby on Sunday.
“Really happy with the progress, knee is looking much better,” he wrote on Twitter.
“Working on fitness for Sunday.”
Rafael van der Vaart also believes he will be fit for the Premier League clash.
“I’m recovering well from my calf injury,” said Van der Vaart.
“I expect to be joining the team training on Wednesday, after which
my I will start to focus on the match.
“I’ll be happy to play Arsenal. I can’t wait.”
Spurs have a major concern over left-back Benoit Assou-ekotto.
Danny Rose, who scored a spectacular goal against Arsenal two seasons ago, could deputise – but he has not started a Premier League game this season.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is determined his underperforming players will deliver on Sunday as they look to stay in the top four after their 4-0 Champions League humiliation at AC Milan was followed by a disappointing exit from the FA Cup at Sunderland.
Laurent Koscielny hobbled off at the San Siro, but the French centre-half is expected to recover from his knee problem in time to face Spurs.
German international Per Mertesacker is out for the rest of the season after damaging ankle ligaments in the Premier League win at Sunderland a fortnight ago.
But the centre-back insists he will recover from an operation in time to play some part for his national team at Euro 2012.
FITNESS BATTLE: Adebayor