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Tottenham team news: Spurs set to face Barcelona without six first-teamers including Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli and Jan Vertonghen

The Dane was one of several key players to sit out training at Enfield on Tuesday morning

Liam Twomey
Tuesday 02 October 2018 13:58 BST
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Tottenham look set to be without Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli, Jan Vertonghen, Mousa Dembele and Serge Aurier for Wednesday’s clash with Barcelona in the Champions League.

Eriksen, Vertonghen and Dembele all missed training on Tuesday morning ahead of the game, and Tottenham subsequently confirmed that they along with Alli and Aurier will be sidelined until after the October international break, making them unavailable for Saturday's home match against Cardiff City in the Premier League.

Lloris is available for selection again after taking part as he steps up his recovery from a thigh injury that has sidelined him since August, and Mauricio Pochettino confirmed that the France international will start against Barcelona barring a late setback.

Michel Vorm (knee) is also unavailable, meaning that Spurs’ third-choice goalkeeper Paulo Gazzaniga is the only cover for Lloris.

Vertonghen and Dembele were both substituted at half-time of Tottenham’s 2-0 win over Huddersfield Town on Saturday with injuries, while Eriksen has missed the last two games with a stomach problem. Alli (hamstring) and Aurier (thigh) are already confirmed to be out.

Tottenham’s injury crisis gives Pochettino a difficult decision to make over whether to deploy Eric Dier in defence or midfield, where Harry Winks is set to start

Despite what is clearly less than ideal preparation striker Harry Kane is confident the injuries will not derail his side.

"That's the reason we have a big squad, it's time for the next man to step in," he said. "Of course it's a massive game in the group, you never want to start with two losses. At home we have to be strong if we want to progress.

Eriksen will miss the game at Wembley (Getty)

"Barcelona are a fantastic side but last year we proved we can beat the big teams, especially at home."

An agonising defeat to Inter Milan at San Siro on matchday one has increased Spurs’ need to secure a positive result against Barcelona, who are on a three-game winless streak in La Liga.

Lionel Messi remains in imperious form, however, having scored five goals in seven La Liga appearances to go with his hat-trick against PSV Eindhoven on matchday one, and Pochettino has instructed his players to relish the challenge of facing the Argentine superstar.

“I am not going to try to find a solution [to stop him],” Pochettino insisted. “I am going to say to the players: ‘Enjoy playing against Messi, because you are going to have the opportunity to play against one of the best players in the history of football.

“More than worrying you, that needs to excite you to play and so you can say – like me – ‘Oh, I played against Messi or I played against Maradona or I played against Ronaldo’.

“So enjoy it. Enjoy playing against Messi. And then, it’s difficult to find solutions to try to stop him, I promise you. I think it’s impossible. In the end, when you have the ball, to try to play in the opposite half, to try to push Leo to play far from your goal.

“Because if not, it’s terrible if he is close and takes the ball.”

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