Blackburn and Tottenham must do better to deserve European football

Blackburn Rovers’ hopes of UEFA Cup football next season took a hit when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Tottenham.

Bulgarian international Dimitar Berbatov gave Tottenham, who have already made sure of a return to Europe by winning the League Cup, a sixth-minute lead before Morten Gamst Pedersen levelled for Blackburn on the half-hour mark.

England goalkeeper Paul Robinson was left out by Tottenham after being troubled by an ankle injury and his replacement Radek Cerny was soon in difficulties when he fluffed a clearance.

But Spurs were soon in front.

Steed Malbranque passed for Jermaine Jenas who found Berbatov in space and the Bulgarian coolly slotted in his 22nd goal of the season.

At the other end of the pitch, Pedersen had a shot saved by Cerny before England winger David Bentley created an equaliser for the Blackburn star.

Bentley breezed past Pascal Chimbonda before pulling the ball back for Pedersen to finish past Brad Friedel.

Bentley and his England international counterpart Aaron Lennon both shone in an end-to-end game but neither side was able to find the killer touch with the result leaving Rovers in eighth place and Tottenham in 11th.

Blackburn can still improve on this season, with Portsmouth facing a tough run of fixtures with an away game to West Ham on Tuesday and then home next weekend to a resurgent Newcastle United. Tottenham on the other hand have more to worry from Newcastle United overtaking them than of them going on to overtake West Ham.

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