Tottenham Hotspur: Europa League Draw and the Weekend to Come

Daniel JaffeContributor IIIAugust 5, 2011

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 12:  Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Rednapp talks to the media during a press conference on the eve of their UEFA Champions League quarter-final second leg match against Real Madrid at White Hart Lane on April 12, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Tottenham were handed the best possible draw for their Europa League playoff this morning: a meeting with Scottish club, Hearts.

Just as they did facing Young Boys last season in the Champions League playoffs, Spurs will travel to Hearts for the first leg next Thursday and play the reverse at the Lane a week later.

Spurs were placed in Group Three as a seeded club, meaning they had the chance of drawing one of five clubs: Trabzonspor (TUR), FC Karpaty Lviv (UKR), Hearts (SCO), Legia Warsaw (POL) or FK Ekrana (LTU).

Rather than face killer tasks in Turkey or the Ukraine, Spurs seemingly escaped playoff danger by only having to travel 400 miles north to Edinburgh.

Aside from the Europa League draw, Tottenham play their final preseason friendly against Spanish opponents Athletic Bilbao tomorrow afternoon.

The encounter has added spice due to Tottenham's suggested interest in the Spanish club's "El Grande" Fernando Llorente.

It is thought that Spurs will open talks with the Bilbao striker while the team are in London for the weekend. The quoted fee is said to be around £30 million, but Spurs will hope to lower the price if they are not willing to meet Bilbao's valuation.

So what is the best possible situation for Tottenham this weekend?

A third of the puzzle has been completed already by finding an easier draw against Hearts in the Europa League. The second task is completing the preseason with a representative match against Athletic Bilbao and escaping without any further injuries.

The final task: a double-sided win against the Spanish clubs. Meaning a win in the friendly match and a win in prizing Llorente from his hometown club.