x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 16 January 2018

Ramos confident Spurs can stop the rot in basement battle

Alam Khan Chief UK Sports Correspondent Juande Ramos might have had the dreaded vote of confidence this week, but he remains confident that Tottenham's fortunes will finally improve. It is a battle of the Premier League's basement clubs today as Stoke host the Londoners and Spurs will come off the bottom if they can win their first league game of season in eight attempts. But Ramos remains positive after a meeting with his chairman, Daniel Levy, about the club's worst run since 1912.

The Spaniard has compared football to the financial markets and, despite being tipped for the sack, he says they will be in a healthier position by the start of the next transfer window when he can strengthen. "He [Levy] is very happy," said Ramos. "We know the problem and we are speaking about looking for the solution, but the meeting was nice. The problem has to stop on Sunday, not January. We have to show that we are worthy to stay up, but if we are not winning games it doesn't count for anything. We need to win matches.

"Football is like the markets. It's possible that the markets change and go up, and so do we. When you win you are the best [coach] and when you lose you are the worst. This is football. It never always is good and never always is bad." Having netted just four league goals, it's clear where Tottenham's problems remain and with Roman Pavlyuchenko expected to miss out with ankle ligament trouble, Darren Bent looks set to shoulder the goal scoring responsibility in what is likely to be tough test against a physical Stoke side.

But Ramos said: "To win or to lose, all the team have the responsibility. We are very good in defence, in midfield very good, but we need to improve and score goals." Like Ramos, his Stoke counterpart Tony Pulis also wants more from his strikers, particularly Dave Kitson. Having not won in five league games, the newly promoted side are finding life in the top flight tough and Kitson in particular is suffering.

He has not found the net since his £5.5million (Dh35m) arrival from Reading and Pulis said: "Every striker gets down in the dumps if they don't score and Dave is no different. Strikers live off goals and as soon as he gets one I'm sure it will take a weight off his shoulders." @Email:akhan@thenational.ae