Ivanovic: Spurs clash is crucial

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Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic knows tonight's game against Spurs could be crucial to their fading title chance.

Andre Villas-Boas' side sit 12 points behind league-leaders Manchester City ahead of tonight's game-in-hand, although third place Tottenham will be looking to extend their advantage ahead of the Blues.

With Arsenal breathing down their neck in fifth, a place in the Champions League positions is no longer a guarantee either, and Ivanovic knows the side will need to be on their guard at White Hart Lane.

"Tottenham is one of the most important games for us this season. It could be a crucial game and afterwards we can go up in the table and try to come back and fight for the title," said the Serbian international.

"We will do everything to change the situation where we are behind the leaders, and this is a very difficult game for us but we need to do well. Tottenham is always tough but we will do our best."

The Stamford Bridge outfit have also had some positive injury news since their disappointing 1-1 draw against Wigan at the weekend, with John Terry passed fit to play despite limping away from an open training session on Monday.

Ramires is also back for the visitors, meaning all the injury problems lie with Harry Redknapp's side ahead of the trip to north London.

"It is good that John and Ramires will be ready for the game but it doesn't matter so much who plays, Tottenham play like a team, they work hard collectively but also have outstanding individual quality in their squad," he added.

"We have to match them, and their top players, and believe in ourselves and play better football. They're very dangerous on the attack and creative in the midfield, but combative as well with Scotty Parker who used to play here.

"We know about him and we also have players who can decide a game. It will be a big atmosphere and we have to be ready for that because they always have an extra motivation against us."

Tottenham Hotspur
Branislav Ivanovic
Premier League
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