Fulham boss Chris Coleman has promised Tottenham a “ding-dong” in Sunday’s London derby.
The Cottagers are facing a midfield injury crisis for the trip to White Hart Lane with six players missing, including the influential Jimmy Bullard and Papa Bouba Diop.
England Under-21 winger Wayne Routledge is also unavailable through the terms of the loan agreement which took him to Fulham from White Hart Lane
Coleman is unsure what team he will field but with a third consecutive victory at stake, he has told Spurs to expect a bruising encounter.
“We may have to play a few square pegs in round holes on Sunday. We may have to change our gameplan,” he said.
“I’m not promising a pretty game but I don’t care as we’re on a decent run at the moment.
“As long as we maintain that we’ll go to Tottenham and have a ding-dong with them. It’s a London derby so no one is expecting a tea party.
“Our opening six games have been tough but we’ve had a good start and there is a good vibe in the squad. Any result at White Hart Lane will be good for us.”
The loss of Diop to a quad-muscle strain has robbed Fulham of their midfield enforcer and Coleman revealed the lack of steel could force him to deploy an extra defender.
“We need someone with a bit of mettle. We have some good footballing midfielders available but we need someone in there with a bit of strength and presence,” he said.
“We’ll have to mix it up a bit – we could stick a defender in midfield.”
Michael Brown is preparing to face former club Spurs for the first time since moving to Craven Cottage in January.
The 29-year-old was in impressive form during last Saturday’s 2-1 victory over Newcastle and Coleman expects him to emerge as a key figure on Sunday.
“I was delighted with Browny against Newcastle because he picked up the baton after Jimmy Bullard left the pitch injured,” he said.
“He certainly gave Emre a tough time. Browny’s at his best when he’s upset, is getting stuck into opponents and is winning the ball.
“He gets into the box and has great energy levels.”