By Harry Sykes
Toby Alderweireld will miss Tottenham’s Premier League clash against Swansea on Saturday, according to a report.
The Sun claim that the key centre-back has not recovered from the knee injury that has sidelined him since mid-October.
Alderweireld, 27, has missed Spurs’ last nine matches since breaking down in the 1-1 draw against West Brom on 15 October and his absence this weekend is a major blow.
In the absence of the Belgium international, Mauricio Pochettino’s side have won just a single match and their defence has lost its aura of impregnability.
Eric Dier has stepped back from midfield to partner Jan Vertonghen but the partnership has been less effective than the dual Belgian alliance, which has been key to Spurs’ success in the last two seasons.
Tottenham host Swansea at White Hart Lane this weekend as they aim to get their season back on track following consecutive defeats to Chelsea and Monaco.
The north Londoners are fifth in the Premier League, seven points adrift of leaders Chelsea.
Football Insider verdict:
Alderweireld’s continued absence is a major blow for Spurs. The Belgian has been the best centre-back in the Premier League during the last two seasons as well as being the commanding leader of the division’s outstanding back line. Tottenham’s defence has been far easier to breach without Alderweireld, with Dier proving a less than convincing replacement. The Belgian’s composure on the ball and long passing has also been sorely missed. Any side would miss a player of Alderweireld’s influence and, as far as Spurs are concerned, he cannot return quickly enough.
In other Tottenham team news, Spurs are to make a January approach for a Manchester United 27-year-old.