Juande Ramos hopes to get one over on his old club Spurs in Europa League
Ex-Tottenham boss, now at Ukraine's Dnipro, dreams of an upset but admits it won't be easy
Former Tottenham manager Juande Ramos will be reunited with the English Premier League side in the last 32 of the Europa League on Thursday night as Spurs travel to Ukraine for their first-leg tie against Dnipro.
Ramos guided Tottenham to the League Cup title in 2008, the last time the London club won any silverware, but was unceremoniously sacked the following season after less than a year in the job.
The Spaniard, a two-time Uefa Cup winner during his reign at Sevilla, acknowledges he faces an uphill climb if he's to repeat such success with Dnipro.
"Spurs are superior. They're clear favourites and there's a very good chance of us getting knocked out," Ramos said.
"One Spurs player may be our annual budget. You can prepare players and Spurs could still score four. Why? Because they're better. I can say: 'Look out, [Aaron] Lennon's quick on the outside.' They know but, voom-voom and he's gone. What are you going to do, chuck a rope round him?" lamented Ramos.
Spurs are competing for a top-four spot in the league, and despite having to travel to Norwich just three days after a 4,800-kilometre round trip to eastern Europe, manager Tim Sherwood insisted he would field a strong side against Dnipro. "I love it [the Europa League]. There are a lot of games coming up but we haven't got to worry about that.
"We are out of all the other competitions and we have got a big enough squad," said the Spurs boss, who could also welcome back Brazilian midfielder Sandro after two months out.
Swansea City resume their European adventure with the visit of Serie A heavyweights Napoli to south Wales.
Swansea, who sacked manager Michael Laudrup earlier this month, were knocked out of the FA Cup at Everton over the weekend but a glamorous fixture against one of Italy's leading clubs should make for a special evening for a club that almost tumbled out of the Football League just over a decade ago.
"It promises to be a great occasion at the Liberty. Napoli are having a good season in Italy and we're under no illusions about how tough it is going to be," said goalkeeper Gerhard Tremmel.