Steve McClaren says Spurs would be title contenders, if not for the fact they are in the Europa League.
Ah yes, the curse of the Europa League.
Whilst it does give extra challenges with the extra games, Sir Bobby Robson proved that Europe could be overcome as his Newcastle side had a remarkable record of not only not losing, but winning game after game in the Premier League matches that followed European games.
Remember as well that Newcastle were in the Champions League and had a far smaller squad than Spurs have now.
It would be far more accurate if Steve McClaren had said the boys from White Hart Lane would be title contenders IF they stopped drawing too many matches.
Out of 15 Premier League games they have drawn a remarkable eight of them, far more than their rivals.
Their matches following Europa League outing simply follow their overall Premier League form.
In the League Spurs have won 6 drawn 9 and lost 1.
Whilst in the 5 games after European outings they have won 2 and drawn 3.
At home tonight against Monaco, Spurs have already qualified for the next stage, so absolutely no pressure on team selection or performance and so apparently little chance of that affecting Sunday’s game.
Despite Spurs being undefeated in the league since the opening day, Newcastle must look to think they have every chance of getting something, especially with four of the eight draws being at home for Spurs.
Added confidence can obviously also be taken from the wins last week against Liverpool and last season at White Hart Lane.
“We need to follow up at White Hart Lane. We need to put in a performance if we are to get anything.
“We go there fully focussed and intent on giving a performance and getting a result.
“If Spurs weren’t in the Europa League they would be title contenders, a good team. They have a good squad of players and they play with a very high intensity.”