Distin doubtful for Spurs clash

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Everton manager David Moyes has more selection problems ahead of Sunday's visit of Tottenham.

Centre-back Sylvain Distin and midfielder Dan Gosling both sustained hamstring injuries in the midweek Europa League victory over AEK Athens with Distin a major doubt.

Brazilian striker Jo also picked up a minor knee injury in Greece but he is expected to recover in time.

Joseph Yobo missed the European clash with a hamstring problem and is unlikely to feature while fellow defender Johnny Heitinga serves a one-match suspension after receiving his fifth booking of the season in last week's Merseyside derby defeat.

Manager David Moyes believes Tottenham should have achieved more in recent seasons with the amount of money lavished on their squad.

Spurs are currently third in the Barclays Premier League after an impressive start but Moyes has warned Everton's opponents spending money does not always guarantee success.

In the last two seasons Tottenham have splashed out about #50million (in 2007/08) and #77million on new signings and finished 11th and eighth and won the Carling Cup.

Everton, by contrast, spent roughly around #20million and #23million and finished fifth twice.

This summer the transfer outlay was not so far apart with Spurs boss Harry Redknapp forking out #23million, #6million more than his Everton counterpart.

"Tottenham have always been spenders. Since I have been at Everton, every year I've looked to see what they are doing and said 'Oh, Tottenham have bought again'," said the Scot.

"I think, for what they have invested, Tottenham will have looked for a bit more over the years but in the main they have always been a good side.

"Harry has done a brilliant job with the people he has brought in because they have done really well for him and with the squad they have are capable of challenging for the top four.

"But there is a lot of talk about clubs wanting to finish in the top four - we want to finish in the top four.

"We finished fifth last year so there are a lot of clubs trying to take our position and have spent big to do that."

Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp will be without Ledley King and Jonathan Woodgate.

King has been troubled by a hamstring injury and Woodgate is struggling to shake off a groin complaint, meaning they join Luka Modric on the sidelines.

Niko Kranjcar is back after being cup-tied for the midweek Carling Cup defeat at Manchester United.

Redknapp has declared the race for a top-four place in the Barclays Premier League as the most open since Everton grabbed a Champions League spot.

Back in 2005 David Moyes' men were the last team to break the monopoly of Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool - and even then their city rivals were allowed in Europe's top competition after winning the trophy in Istanbul that season.

This campaign has seen Liverpool and Arsenal stutter, with Spurs seizing their chance and going into the weekend in third place ahead of their trip to Goodison Park.

"Most definitely it's the most open," Redknapp said. "Liverpool all last year only lost two games but they got a few injuries and it showed they are vulnerable. If they get injuries to Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard they are not the same.

"It's up for grabs with Liverpool, Arsenal, ourselves, Man City, Aston Villa - I think there's five teams there to scrap it out.

"Arsenal and Liverpool would be favourites for those positions but it's not impossible for one of us to break in there."

Spurs' strong start to the season came a year after failing to win in the first eight games of the 2009-09 campaign under Juande Ramos, leading to Redknapp replacing the Spaniard.

"We are on our way to becoming a top club," Redknapp said.

"From where we were last season after eight games we have come a long way. It has been a fantastic turnaround. We have to maintain that and keep pushing on."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Europa League
Tottenham Hotspur
Jonathan Woodgate
Joseph Yobo
European News
Niko Kranjcar
Ledley King
Manchester City
League Cup
Premier League
Johnny Heitinga
Fernando Torres
UEFA Champions League
Manchester United
Steven Gerrard
Luka Modric
Aston Villa
Sylvain Distin
Dan Gosling

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