Stoke City vs. Tottenham Hotspur preview: It has to be six from six

Shaun Botterill

Tottenham's battle for a Champions League place comes down to two matches, six points and needing some help.

It's pretty simple for Tottenham Hotspur from here out: They have to win or kiss the Champions League goodbye.

Two matches, two wins. Six points at stake, six points captured. That's it.

If Tottenham do not win against Stoke, all Arsenal have to do it win on Wednesday against Wigan and Spurs are -- realistically, if not mathematically -- out of the race for fourth place and the Champions League. They'll have to win next week too, but that won't matter if they're relegated to fifth before the final weekend even comes around.

Stoke are dealing with injuries to Glenn Whelan, Andy Wilkinson and Marc Wilson, all of whom may play, but are more likely to come off the bench as they deal with injuries. Meanwhile, Moussa Dembele and Aaron Lennon are both fit and available to play, giving Spurs a definite edge in fitness, but that hasn't always mattered to this team.

After all, this is the same team that has been leaning on Gareth Bale all season. The same team that drew Wigan two weeks ago to give up control of their destiny. The same team that slumped for two months while Arsenal and Chelsea surged past them.

So will Spurs take advantage of their relative fitness? Will they get the first of six necessary points? It feels like they have as much control over that as whether Newcastle will still be in the relegation battle when they play Arsenal on the final weekend.

They are Spurs.

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