This week sees Bolton playing a big FA Cup quarterfinal against North London hotshots Tottenham Hotspur. I suspect Spurs swashbuckling ways make our own Owen Coyle chartreuse with envy. Curious whether this was the proper emotion, I emailed Kevin McCauley at SB Nation's own Spurs blog, Cartilage Free Captain. I provided three questions, he provided three answers. Keep an eye out for a possible Ryan Nelson sighting;
Lion of Vienna Suite; Depth seems to be a problem for Spurs, as your first eleven can compete with any team in the world. Who will be missing this week, and what kind of replacements will Bolton have to deal with?
Cartilage Free Captain; It's funny, because we're not that far removed from a world where Spurs had one of the deepest teams in the Premier League, but not enough quality to compete with the best teams, at least in the eyes of most. Aaron Lennon and Michael Dawson are both out, and Harry Redknapp's struggled to find the right solution at central defense and on the right. Luka Modric and Gareth Bale have been played out of position on the wing, while Ledley King and Younes Kaboul have struggled as a defense pairing. Expect Niko Kranjcar to get a recall at right midfield, and one of either William Gallas or Ryan Nelsen next to Kaboul in defense.
LOVS; Harry Rednapp has (obviously) been in the news for a variety of reasons. Will he leave White Hart Lane this summer? And is that a bad thing?
CFC; I think he will leave for the England job, provided Spurs don't fall apart and England still want to hire him. I will reserve judgment on whether or not that is a good thing until we see what his replacement does. I think that Harry is a competent, if slightly overrated manager. I feel like Spurs' success is much more a product of the quality and form of the players than anything Harry Redknapp does, and that there are plenty of managers who could do the job just as well.
LOVS; Matches between our clubs are usually free-wheeling high-scoring affairs. Is that what you would predict for Saturday, a good old-fashioned cup tie?
CFC; Based on the form, fitness and quality of the two defenses, that seems like something that might happen. Though, I'm not sure where Bolton's goals are coming from other than set pieces. We're good at screwing up on those, so I'll say that Tottenham will win 2-1.