Houllier hopeful on Dunne and Carew

The new Villa boss was forced to tackle Sunday’s derby date with

Wolves without the key duo, with both men laid low through injury.

In the end the Villans did not need the pair, as they claimed a 2-1

win, but they remain keen to welcome them back for Saturday’s trip

to White Hart Lane. Houllier is confident that Dunne, who has been

nursing a knee complaint, and Carew, who has a back problem, will

be in contention for the trip to the capital, with steady progress

being made in their respective rehabilitations. The Frenchman is,

however, concerned that Gabriel Agbonlahor may miss the crunch

clash. The England international has shaken off the calf injury

which saw him withdrawn from the recent Carling Cup victory over

Blackburn, but he is now struggling with a groin issue and faces a

race against time to prove his fitness. Asked if he thought Dunne

and Carew would be back in time to face Spurs, Houllier told the

club’s official website: “I hope so. I think Richard will start

training on Tuesday, don’t forget he’s kept his fitness all right,

and he will join on Wednesday with the rest of the lads. “John will

train Wednesday. John, I think, got injured doing some weights. “My

concern is Gabby, because again he has felt his groin. We will have

to investigate a bit more. “The problem with his calves has gone,

now it’s gone up his body.” Meanwhile, Houllier has revealed that

Ciaran Clark is unlikely to be involved at White Hart Lane despite

recovering from a dead leg. “Ciaran trained only once before the

Wolves game. That’s why he was left out,” added the Villa boss. “I

don’t think he will be in contention because I think Richard

(Dunne) will be back.”