Tottenham caretaker manager Tim Sherwood made no direct reference to departed boss Andre Villas-Boas during his first interview since taking the post, instead preferring to turn his focus towards Wednesday night’s Capital One Cup quarterfinal against West Ham.
Sherwood, a former Spurs captain, has emerged as the bookies’ favourite to succeed Villas-Boas following his sacking on Monday.
And the ex-Blackburn player seems determined to launch his bid for the job with victory against a Hammers side that won 3-0 on their last visit to White Hart Lane in October.
“When you lose your manager it’s a change and you’ve got to listen to a different voice, but I’m hoping to get a few messages across in a short space of time so we can get a positive result against West Ham,” Sherwood told Spurs TV.
“It’s a huge game, especially on the back of what they did to us at the Lane [in October]. It was disappointing. We have to get out there on the front foot and we have to impose ourselves on them as soon as we can during the game.”
Sherwood went on to express his hope that Sam Allardyce’s West Ham side may be more focused on their ongoing battle to steer clear of the Premier League relegation zone, as he looks to make an impression on those supporters that may be sceptical about his claims to become the full-time Tottenham boss.
“Hopefully they’ve got their concentration on Premier League safety rather than the cup tomorrow night,” he said.
“We have to be patient. They got bodies behind the ball and tried to catch us on the counter-attack. We’re aware of that. Let’s just hope we can impose ourselves on them nice and early, get the crowd behind us and really be up and at them.”
Sherwood confirmed his squad is “light” in defensive options, even though Vlad Chiriches and Younes Kaboul could return after missing Sunday’s 5-0 defeat against Liverpool, while midfielder Christian Eriksen is also in contention for a recall.