COMMENT By Dominic Toner
Mousa Dembele should be restored to the starting line up for Tottenham’s Champions League match against Monaco.
Spurs host the French side at Wembley on Wednesday night and Dembele must replace Victor Waynama in the midfield.
Wanyama, who moved to White Hart Lane for £11million this summer, has made a solid start to his Spurs career with the winning goal against Crystal Palace and a series of disciplined displays.
However the return of Dembele, who would have been available even had he not completed a six-game domestic suspension, will be a major boost for Mauricio Pochettino’s side.
The 29-year-old was banned after clashing with Chelsea striker Diego Costa last season but is available for the first time this campaign against Monaco.
The Belgian midfielder was the unsung hero of Spurs’ title push last season and his powerful performances in the middle of the park made him a firm fan favourite.
Dembele is remarkably strong on the ball and often bullies opposition midfielders, something which will only improve the Spurs side.
While Wanyama does offer a reliable base it is the all round attributes of the box-to-box Dembele that gives him the edge.
England international Eric Dier has established himself as a regular starter under Pochettino and sits in front of the defence as cover, however playing alongside Wanyama has been viewed by some fans as too defensive.
Dembele possesses the qualities of an all round midfielder and does have more of an attacking threat than his new team-mate.
He has now made 158 club appearances for Spurs and scored nine goals in the process.
The decision to axe Wanyama could be seen as a harsh once considering he has started all four of the club’s fixtures this season, however the busy fixture list that Spurs face in European and domestic competitions means the whole squad will be called upon.
In other Tottenham team news, Charlie Nicholas has predicted the outcome of the club’s match against Monaco.