Injuries mean Tottenham could be forced to play third-choice goalkeeper Pau Lopez against Watford

Hugo Lloris is still struggling with an illness and Michel Vorm sustained a knee injury in the win over Swansea, meaning Mauricio Pochettino may hand a first start to Lopez

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The Independent Football

Tottenham’s third-choice goalkeeper Pau Lopez could be handed a first Premier League start this weekend, with Hugo Lloris and Michel Vorm both unlikely to face Watford.

Captain Lloris was forced to withdrawn shortly before Tottenham’s win against Swansea on Wednesday, with illness.

The French international was replaced in Mauricio Pochettino’s starting XI by Vorm – who has only started nine Premier League games during his three seasons in north London – but the Dutchman suffered a minor knee injury in the 3-1 victory.

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Vorm picked up a knock in the win against Swansea (Getty)

Both will be assessed directly ahead of the Watford clash, potentially handing an opportunity to Lopez, a 22-year-old loanee yet to make an appearance for the first-team.

Despite his dearth of experience, Lopez is highly regarded by Pochettino’s management team, with the Argentinian declaring he has "trust" in the player's ability.

"Pau Lopez is very young but he's here because we believe in and trust in him," the Argentinian added.

"If Hugo or Michel are not ready he's a keeper that can cope with the pressure of playing."

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Lopez was a regular for Espanyol last season (Getty)

The Spanish youngster joined Tottenham on a season-long loan deal from La Liga side Espanyol, where he was a first-team regular last season, impressing in matches against both Real Madrid and Barcelona.

It is believed the loan includes a £6m option to buy at the end of the current campaign.

Since moving to England Lopez has been restricted to appearances for Tottenham’s U23 team in the Premier League 2. But the Spaniard has performed well in these games, most notably against Sunderland when he made a stunning reaction stop to deny Joel Asoro.

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The 22-year-old has been playing for Tottenham's reserve team (Getty)

Spurs are currently experiencing a minor injury crisis with Victor Wanyama also likely to remain on the sidelines for Saturday’s match.

Danny Rose remains injured while Erik Lamela and Harry Winks have both been ruled out for the rest of the season, although Pochettino did announce on his press conference on Friday that Harry Kane has returned to full training. 

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