Tottenham projected defense
In the if it is not broke, do not fix it category, Ryan Mason sticks with the five men who earned a shutout of Wolves. Whether or not Aurier is really injured is likely irrelevant at this point, as Japhet Tanganga should get the call again. While not loving the Dier, Alderweireld combination, I cannot see Mason changing something that seems to be working.
Reguilón – Left-back
Spaniard Sergio Reguilón has had an up-and-down first season in London. He came onto the scene with such a splash as an alternative to Ben Davies. After dealing with injuries at the turn of the new year, Reguilón has been consistent in the team with Davies now injured and likely out for the season. Reguilón has been solid of late and is always willing to attack, which should continue on Wednesday.
Dier – Center back
Eric Dier seems to have become a fixture under Ryan Mason as he is actually rather central to the team’s passing game. While Alderweireld is the more polished long ball knocking, Dier plays his fair share of long balls and is often the back who is playing the ball back and forth with the midfield. Assuming Tottenham continues to try and play possession football, Dier should be okay.
Alderweireld – Center back
Whereas Eric Dier has lacked consistency in his performances this season, for Toby Alderweireld it has been about consistent minutes. Back at his favored right center back position under Mason, Toby has done well leading the backline the last couple of weeks. While he cannot play as closely to attackers as he once did, he still has great timing and plays smart.
Tanganga – Right-back
Japhet Tanganga came in on the weekend for a reportedly injured Serge Aurier and there is no reason to think that will not continue against Aston Villa. Tanganga was solid enough defensively but did not quite see enough of the ball in the attack. Surely in the film sessions, the team will see the space a short back-pass to Tanganga would create for a cross or just to spread the defense. Expect to see more of Japhet on Wednesday.
Lloris – Goalkeeper
Hugo Lloris has played every minute in the Premier League this season and barring injury expect that to continue for the next 180 minutes. With Tottenham’s European future on the line, there is no chance Lloris does not get the gloves and the armband. Lloris has likely enjoyed life under Ryan Mason considerably more than under Jose Mourinho. It is one thing to ask the 34-year-old captain to make 3-5 saves a game, it is another to ask him to 8-10.