Champions League - Pienaar out of Madrid game

Sun, 03 Apr 23:41:00 2011

Tottenham midfielder Steven Pienaar has revealed he will miss the first leg of Tottenham's Champions League quarter-final against Real Madrid on Tuesday due to injury.

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The South Africa international has been struggling with a groin problem that first came to light last month.

Pienaar represented his country during the recent international break, but he revealed that the injury had flared up again, writing on his Twitter account: "Out for the Madrid game. Groin still not right."

If confirmed by the club's doctors, the news will come as another blow for Spurs boss Harry Redknapp, who is already sweating on the fitness of defender William Gallas and star winger Gareth Bale.

Ledley King, Jonathan Woodgate and Younes Kaboul are all definitely out of the match, while midfielder Tom Huddlestone is only just back from a long-term lay-off.

Pienaar was named among the substitutes for Saturday's goalless draw with Wigan at the DW Stadium but did not get on the pitch.

Bale sat out the 0-0 draw against Wigan because of a hamstring injury which also forced him to miss Wales' defeat by England.

"Gareth is okay, he has got a chance," Redknapp said.

"He should be fit for the game. As for Gallas he is struggling. Unless there is a big improvement in his knee I doubt if he will be fit."

Redknapp believes having both Bale and Aaron Lennon fit and available will only boost their chances of success against Jose Mourinho's side. Lennon came on in the second half for Rafael Van der Vaart at Wigan and Tottenham had their best spell of the match.

"We are going to need pace in wide positions if we plan to hit Real Madrid on the counter-attack," said Redknapp. "That is what we have been doing all season in Europe.

"I felt when Lennon came on we perked up. He caused them problems then we gave the ball away again."

PA Sport

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