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Stoke City (H) Fri 26 Dec 2014, 15:00, Barclays Premier League

Boss Expects Different Spurs

by Daniel Alston @efc_danalston

Roberto Martinez has been assessing Tottenham's upturn in form as he prepares to take his side to White Hart Lane on Sunday.

A 0-0 draw at Goodison Park earlier in the season came at the end of a fairly even contest - and while Everton have enjoyed high standards of consistency since, Spurs' form sank before a changing of the guard.

Out went Andre Villas-Boas and in former player Tim Sherwood - a man who has led his team to 17 out of a possible 24 since taking over.

It provides Martinez with plenty of food for thought, with the Spaniard knowing a win can take the Toffees four points clear of their opponents and potentially back into a Champions League berth.

He said: "Spurs are one of the teams in form. Since the new manager has come in, they play with a real freedom.

I think they have got rid of that responsibility and tension of having a lot of money spent in the summer - I think it's the opposite now.

"They have a very good group of players trying to enjoy their football. They come out in games expressing themselves.

"I feel that they are a difficult side to face now and it's going to be a terrific test.

"In many ways they are still very similar because they have the same playing personnel and they have a strong footballing concepts that have been maintained.

"But on the other side they are very different in the psychology of the team.

"They are very free in their football with nothing to lose. They press high with good intensity and energy, they are good on the counter-attack and can do a bit of everything.

"With their new individuals, they are still gelling together. It's a dangerous team to face and under Tim Sherwood they are developing.

"We haven't seen them at their best yet and we hope to stop them fulfilling that this weekend."

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