By Noel Whelan

24th Sep, 2019 | 9:41am

'Pochettino is getting ruthless' - Exclusive: Pundit suggests next two Spurs stars set for axe

EXCLUSIVE

Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen are the next two Tottenham big names set for the axe, Noel Whelan has claimed.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Wayne Veysey, the ex-Coventry City and Leeds United striker claimed the two centre-halves are symptomatic of the decline at Spurs.

Whelan claims the defenders are fine players but not as effective as they once were and predicts they could follow the likes of Christian Eriksen and Dele Alli in being dumped from the starting XI.

Alderweireld has started all seven of Tottenham’s Premier League and Champions League matches this season, while Vertonghen has started the last four in all competitions after winning back his place in the side.

“If the two centre-backs are not playing well, they need to be dropped to the bench,” Whelan told Football Insider. “It doesn’t matter what your name, or your past record. A name is a myth.

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“It only matters how you’re playing. Pochettino is being ruthless by axing Eriksen and Alli, and he must be ruthless with other stars not playing well enough.

“Vertonghen and Alderweireld are good centre-backs, but Tottenham have other good options, like Davinson Sanchez, who’s far better there than at right-back.

“No-one is untouchable, or they certainly shouldn’t be. I would expect the centre-backs to be dropped if they don’t improve.”

Vertonghen has re-established himself in the Tottenham team after being omitted for the first three matches of the season, when Sanchez partnered Alderweireld in central defence.

Sanchez has moved to right-back for two of the last four games to accommodate Vertonghen, but neither player have looked especially comfortable and Spurs lost 2-1 at Leicester City on Saturday after failing to hold on to a lead for the second time in four days, following the midweek 2-2 draw at Olympiakos.

In other Tottenham news, it can be REVEALED that the club are lining up a sensational £60million offer.