Spurs star to miss Blackpool clash

Tottenham Hotspur's Rafael Van der Vaart
Tottenham Hotspur's Rafael Van der Vaart
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Rafael van der Vaart aggravated his calf injury in training yesterday and will miss the trip to Blackpool, Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp revealed this morning.

The former Real Madrid man played an hour of Tottenham’s 1-0 win against AC Milan last Tuesday after picking up the injury in the club’s 2-1 win at Bolton on February 5.

Redknapp confirmed that his star forward suffered a recurrence of the problem in training yesterday.

But Redknapp is confident that the Dutchman will be back to full fitness for Tottenham’s game at Wolves on March 6 and the club’s crucial Champions League clash with AC Milan three days later.

Redknapp said: “Rafa did his calf again yesterday in training so he’s struggling (for tomorrow’s game).

“He missed a couple of games, played in Milan, got through 70 minutes and then yesterday morning didn’t feel good.

“It’s a blow, he is a fantastic player. We need him but we can’t get that run out of him.

“I’m hoping he will be back for Wolves. He should be ok, it’s not a tear.”

Redknapp’s hopes of pushing for a top-four finish have been hampered by injuries to key players.

Gareth Bale missed the win at the San Siro with a back injury and is not available for tomorrow’s game against Ian Holloway’s side.

Redknapp is hopeful that the Welshman will be fit for the second leg, though.

“Gareth is slowly improving and hopefully he’s on his way back,” he said.

“He won’t play tomorrow but shouldn’t be out for too long.”

Jonathan Woodgate picked up a groin injury on his first appearance for the club in 15 months in Italy but his manager is confident that the injury-plagued defender will not be out for too long.

Redknapp added: “Jonathan got a set back in Milan, he got a twinge and we felt it was pretty bad but it isn’t, he’s working his way back and shouldn’t be too bad.”

Vedran Corluka was the victim of a horrific two-footed challenge from Mathieu Flamini during the hot-tempered game at the San Siro last week.

The scan on the ankle that bore the brunt of the Frenchman’s challenge showed the Croatian could be out for four weeks but Redknapp was keen not to be too precise with a return date.

“Corluka had scans and will be out for a while, certainly not tomorrow and not sure how long after that,” the 63-year-old said.

The Tottenham boss did have at least two bits of good news to report this morning.

Ledley King had surgery on his groin injury last week and could return to action soon, while Luka Modric suffered no ill-effects from his appendix operation last week and will play at Bloomfield Road tomorrow.

“Luka is back and fine. He’s available tomorrow,” Redknapp said.

“Ledley is back running and hopefully won’t be too long.”