Tottenham Hotspur return from international duty with a huge game against Manchester City with most but not all the squad available, who will Mourinho start?
Ideally players all return from international break healthy and ready to play. While there were no major injuries for Tottenham Hotspur national team participants, Matt Doherty tested positive for Coronavirus and is out. Beyond Doherty, Jose Mourinho should have a full compliment of players, including a fit Gareth Bale as Tottenham look to start a busy and difficult stretch with a win and three points over Manchester City.
Tottenham Defense and Goal
With Manchester City finally getting healthy – as Sergio Aguero is likely to return for the Sky Blues – Tottenham will need to be at the top of their game to hold a strong offensive that is looking to really get on track for the season. Spurs will not want to be the team that City breaks loose against.
Hugo Lloris (GK)
Hugo Lloris sat out France’s friendly over the break then played the full 90 minutes in both Nations League matches for Les Bleus. Lloris was sharp in the shutout of Portugal but did give up a couple goals in the win over Sweden. Overall, Lloris has looked sharp this season and should be ready for a big game to start back.
Sergio Reguilón (LB)
We will know a lot about how Tottenham plan on approaching this match by who is playing left back. If we see Ben Davies, that means Jose is looking at a more conservative approach to the match, as Davies does not offer quite as much going forward as the Spaniard. Our thought is that Jose wants to be on the front foot and make Per and company respond to Spurs.
Eric Dier (CB)
Eric Dier played 180 minutes in the Nations League this past week but is still the best option to fill the left-side of the center-half equation. Dier has been reliable most of the season for Spurs and is needed for his leadership on the pitch with the defense. If Dier can help to maintain his own and his teammates focus for the full 90 minutes, it will go a long way toward a victory.
Toby Alderweireld (CB)
Toby Alderweireld has been the starter in the Premier League with Eric Dier for the last month of the season and has started five of the eight games played by Spurs in the League. Ideally Tottenham can create enough space for Toby to unleash a few of his trademark cross-field longballs out to Sergio Reguilón running up the wing to create some attacking opportunities for Tottenham. Outside of that expect more of Toby’s no non-sense defending as Tottenham look to keep City in check.
Serge Aurier (RB)
We know that barring a couple consecutive negative Covid tests Matt Doherty is not going to be available for Tottenham on Saturday so in all likelihood we will see Serge Aurier here fresh off 180 minutes in African Cup of Nations qualifying for Cote’ d Ivoire. That would be the logical and obvious choice. There is the outside chance Jose brings Japhet Tanganga out of injury hibernation and starts him in the defense. However, the more probably approach would be to ease Tanganga in midweek in Europe, so Aurier is the smart play here given the circumstances.