Tottenham team news: Jan Vertonghen in contention to face Chelsea as Danny Rose nears return to full training

The Belgium international has missed Spurs' last nine games in all competitions with a hamstring injury

Jonathan Liew
Thursday 22 November 2018 15:15 GMT
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Louise Thomas

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Jan Vertonghen could be set to return to the Tottenham side this weekend, for the first time in almost two months.

The centre-half is back in full training after suffering a hamstring injury that has put him out of action since September, and manager Mauricio Pochettino revealed that he is contention to start the London derby against Chelsea this Saturday evening.

“It’s very good news,” Pochettino said. “Jan is an important player for us. In the last two weeks, he was training very, very well. There’s still one day more [before the Chelsea game], and now we need to wait tomorrow and decide if we believe that he can be involved for Saturday’s game.”

Vertonghen’s return is particularly timely given the news that his fellow defender Davinson Sanchez could be out for the rest of the year with his own hamstring injury.

With Juan Foyth only returning early on Thursday morning from international duty with Argentina, it leaves Toby Alderweireld as Tottenham’s only 100 per cent fit centre-half ahead of a gruelling run of 12 fixtures in 38 days, including the Chelsea game, crunch Champions League ties against Inter Milan and Barcelona, and two north London derbies, both away from home.

Vertonghen suffered the injury against Huddersfield Town
Vertonghen suffered the injury against Huddersfield Town (AFP)

“It’s important to have all the players fit,” Pochettino said. “Davinson is still recovering from his injury, and if you are a player that is close to coming back again, we now have a very very busy period ahead, and I think it’s important to start to recover players.”

Tottenham remain depleted in key areas. Full-backs Kieran Trippier and Danny Rose are both recovering from groin injuries, and will still be a matter of weeks rather than months. Mousa Dembele, meanwhile, is still in Qatar receiving treatment for an ankle injury, with no firm date set for his return.

Given the natural onset of post-World Cup fatigue, it makes Tottenham’s decision not to make any signings during the summer transfer window look doubly ridiculous.

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