Three Tottenham right-back options for Leicester clash amid injury crisis
COMMENT By Harvey Byrne
Mauricio Pochettino has been left short at the back ahead of Thursday evening’s clash against Leicester with right-backs Kyle Walker and Kieran Trippier both ruled out.
The two full-backs have been interchanging in recent fixtures with Trippier seemingly starting the big matches, like the games against Arsenal and Chelsea as well as the White Hart Lane finale against Manchester United on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Walker’s future has been thrown into doubt at the club following his omission from a number of high profile clashes.
But, both players are now set to miss the midweek Foxes meeting with the official Tottenham Twitter account announcing on Wednesday afternoon that Trippier would miss the encounter with a concussion, while Walker had suffered an ankle injury.
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) May 17, 2017
Young up and comer Kyle Walker-Peters is also away on England international duty, meaning Pochettino doesn’t have a lot to select from, but here Football Insider assesses three players the Argentine could select against Leicester.
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Dier, 23, has built up a reputation for his versatility during his time at Tottenham and has been known to play in the centre-back and right-back roles alongside his more natural defensive midfield position. He hasn’t actually taken up a full-back role this season however with his 46 appearances in all competitions coming in the central positions. But, Pochettino may now be forced to play him as a full-back once again against Leicester and he could be the most likely to take up the right-back position on Thursday.
Alderweireld is one of the Premier League’s best centre-backs, but with Tottenham no longer having anything to play for but pride Pochettino may take him out of the centre and put him into the right-back slot with Dier dropping into the centre-back position and Mousa Dembele coming into the midfield. This way of thinking could be due to Dier’s limitations going forward and the Argentine very much likes to play with attacking full-backs. Now, Alderweireld may be a centre-back, but he has shown with several runs up the pitch that he has the ability to make himself a presence in the final third and his range of passing is phenomenal. The Belgian has regularly taken up the right-back role for his home country and has also played there for each of Southampton, Atletico Madrid and Ajax and Thursday could well be his debut for Tottenham in the position.
Similarly to Pochettino liking to play with attacking full-backs he may decide to play a forward in the right wing-back slot, as he did with Son Heung-min against Chelsea. Now, although the South Korean struggled against the Blues and even gave away a penalty, Leicester are considerably weaker opponents. Sissoko has had a disappointing debut season in north London after joining in a huge £30million fee from Newcastle in the summer, but a chance for the right midfielder to play in the right wing-back role would give him one final opportunity to showcase his talents before the season’s end.
In other Tottenham news, this Spurs attacker has also undergone surgery as the injury list mounts.