Defoe calls for fans to aid Europa League chances

Jermain Defoe has called upon the White Hart Lane crowd to help them qualify for the final stages of the Europa League, when they face Panathinaikos on Thursday.

Tottenham currently sit second in Group J, two points behind Lazio, and two points clear of their Greek opponents. A draw would see Andre Villas-Boas’ side through in the competition he won with Porto in 2011.

And England striker Defoe wants to see a vibrant atmosphere on Thursday night to support the side towards cementing a Europa League progression.

“We always have fantastic support and that helps the lads to perform,” Defoe told the official club website. “We want to get through to the knockout stage of the competition and as we’ve said all along, we want to do something special this season.

“Things are going well at the moment and we’ve just got to keep it going.?We moved up to fourth in the Premier League after the 3-0 win at Fulham, our third victory in six days after beating West Ham and Liverpool.??“It’s been an amazing week.”

Defoe, 30, has netted nine goals in 15 league appearances, and scored a hat-trick in their last home outing in the Europa League against Maribor. His 12 goals so far give him a good opportunity to beat his previous best with Spurs, of 24 goals in 2009-10.

Tottenham had a successful week, winning all three of their Premier League clashes, moving the club into fourth position.

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