Laudrup hoping Chico returns to face Bale

Chico Flores could be set to make a timely return from injury as Swansea prepare for the visit of Tottenham and Gareth Bale to the Liberty Stadium.

Chico Flores of Swansea

Defender Flores has been sidelined for seven weeks after rupturing ankle ligaments in last month's win over QPR, and missed the Capital One Cup final success as a result.

But the Spaniard has returned to training and manager Michael Laudrup is upbeat on his chances of playing a part on Saturday.

Laudrup said: "Chico is looking good. He is still feeling something when he does some movements, but that is completely normal for this type of injury.

"He has a possibility of being in the line-up and we will just need to see how he is on Friday."

Being able to field Flores alongside Ashley Williams would be a big boost for Laudrup, even though Garry Monk has deputised ably in his absence, as the Swans face a Spurs side laced with attacking talents.

Wales star Bale has been the man attracting the headlines with his sensational run of 12 goals in 13 games for club and country, but Laudrup knows Swansea will only find trouble if they focus solely on stopping the 23-year-old.

He said: "Yes they have Bale but they have others too. Jermain Defoe is a top-class striker, he has pace and individual quality and his movement is great.

"He is the type of striker I really like, he can drop deep get the ball and make things happen. They have Mousa Dembele, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Clint Dempsey as well.

"We can't think if we close Bale down we will win the game because it's not like that.

"For example, if you think stopping Robin van Persie is enough to stop Manchester United you are wrong, because they have quality players in other positions.

"I know Manchester United are top of the league but Tottenham are one of the teams that have impressed me most.

"They are strong and they have players with individual skills and pace.

"If we look at their front three, they all have individual skills and so much pace. I know Aaron Lennon may not play but they are still a very good team, home and away, because they are so difficult to stop on the counter.

"They will be handful for us but we are at home and we want the result even though we know it will be difficult."

Spurs have lost their last three games, but Laudrup dismissed suggestions it could herald a late-season slump as Andre Villas-Boas' men chase Champions League qualification.

He said: "The reports of the Fulham match said it was a game where things went wrong, and you can have games when too many players are not having their day, but they remain a really good team."



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