Alan Hansen has backed Tottenham Hotspur to win this season's FA Cup because he feels Spurs can benefit from their lack of European football this season.
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp won the Cup in 2008 with his former club Portsmouth and the previously mentioned Match of the Day pundit believes the Spurs boss' admiration for the tournament is another big reason to back the north London Premier League club.
Unlike some of their rivals, Tottenham no longer have the added distraction of European football to negotiate following Spurs' elimination from the Europa League. Hansen believes that could prove crucial in the later rounds of the Cup as Redknapp will be able to pick from a fresher squad.
The former Liverpool captain suggests the fact that one of the two Manchester clubs will crash out at the earliest stage will also aid Tottenham, even though Spurs will inevitably be distracted by their sustained assault on the summit of the Premier League.
"With the two Manchester clubs facing each other in the third round, one of the top two teams in the country will go out at the first hurdle, so that opens the door for others to capitalise." Hansen told the Daily Telegraph, when assessing Tottenham's FA Cup chances this season. "But the FA Cup is all about which teams are prepared to take it seriously enough when they have a big Premier League game three days later and players need resting.
"I'm going to go for Tottenham, though, because they don't have the same European distractions as the other leading clubs, with the exception of Liverpool.
"One big distraction for Spurs is the Premier League because they will believe they can win it.
"Harry Redknapp is a big lover of the FA Cup and Tottenham have a genuine chance. But ultimately, much will depend on how seriously the big clubs take it when they have bigger issues to contend with."
Tottenham host Cheltenham in the Third Round of the FA Cup which starts this weekend.
While Hansen believes Tottenham have a fantastic chance in the FA Cup, Emmanuel Adebayor recently suggested their Premier League aspirations this season would hinge on their ability to win their home games. The striker urged the White Hart Lane faithful to get fully behind the side ahead of their home match against West Brom.
The towering Tottenham star told the club's television channel: "If you want to finish in top four these are the games you cannot lose or draw so it's going to be an important game for us,
"We need the noise, we need them to cheer up, we need the voice, we need them to be our 12th man."