May 22 2013 Latest news:
By Ben Pearce, Tottenham correspondent
Friday, January 25, 2013
Steffen Freund admits he has been surprised by Leeds’ decline as he prepares to return to Elland Road in the FA Cup this weekend.
Freund played for Spurs between 1998 and 2003 and lost three of his four league meetings with the Yorkshire outfit, who reached the Champions League semi-finals in 2001 – and Tottenham’s assistant head coach concedes he has been taken aback by their fall during his absence from England.
“Of course I’m surprised,” he said. “During my time here as a player we always had difficult games at Elland Road.
“They were a really strong team, they finished in the semi-finals of the Champions League, and they are not in the Premier League at the moment.
“That’s why it’s a surprise for me, but they still have a very strong squad. They beat Southampton and Everton in the League Cup this season. They’ve got nine wins and three defeats at home [in the league]. It will be a difficult game for us.”
Freund was in the Tottenham team that overcame Leeds over two legs in the fifth round of the FA Cup in 1999.
“We drew 1-1 at Elland Road, when Tim Sherwood scored, and we beat them 2-0 at home,” the German recalls. “That was a really strong side to play against at that time, and I can’t wait to go there again.”
Meanwhile, Freund announced that there were no new injuries to concern the Lilywhites, and that Sandro and Younes Kaboul are the only absentees from the squad.
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