Despite their best ever start to a Premier League season Spurs have found it difficult to get going especially with the recent fixture congestion.
Tottenham’s Champions League clash with PSV Eindhoven on Tuesday night will be their fourth game in the space of eight days and after not adding to their squad in the summer, Spurs are struggling to keep their players fit. With injuries to Dembele, Danny Rose and Eric Dier, Spurs will be relying on less favoured players over this tough period.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side were unconvincing in their 3-2 victory over Wolves, having nearly blown a 3-0 lead. Goals from all three of Spurs’ attackers (Erik Lamela, Lucas Moura and Harry Kane) put Tottenham in a very comfortable position after 68 minutes. However, after conceding two penalties in the space of 11 minutes Spurs endured a very shaky last 10 minutes trying to hold onto the lead.
Despite giving away two penalties, Juan Foyth, who made his Premier League debut, had a good game and was not at fault for conceding the first spot kick. Kieran Trippier attempted a nutmeg on the edge of the penalty box but lost the ball, so Foyth was forced into making a difficult challenge.
Although Trippier managed to grab an assist for Lucas’ goal, this is the second time this week a mistake by him has led to a goal for the opposition and his lack of form will be worrying Spurs fans.
Someone who isn’t lacking any form is Erik Lamela who bagged his eighth goal from 12 games on Saturday. The Argentinian will also be boosted by his return to the Argentinian squad, alongside Foyth. Even though he has been in fine form, it is unlikely Lamela will start against PSV after featuring in recent weeks and with the return of Eriksen and Son.
Christian Eriksen is expected to start having been rested against Wolves after just coming back from a stomach injury. Disappointingly, Spurs will be without Moussa Dembele after he was forced off within two minutes against Wolves, thanks to an ankle injury which ended his 250th Tottenham appearance early.
However, the other Moussa as been solid for Spurs in recent games and with only Harry Winks available alongside Sissoko, Spurs will heavily rely on that pair of players to control and manage the game.
Heung-Min Son is also expected to return to the starting 11. The South Korean did not start against Wolves but was forced on when Dembele went down injured. Son was then replaced after 59 minutes, indicating Pochettino’s desire to play him against PSV.
In goal, Lloris is suspended after receiving a straight red card against PSV two weeks ago, so Paulo Gazzaniga is expected to return between the sticks, having not put a foot wrong in his four appearances this season.
Sanchez was rested against Wolves but had to come on late in the game as Spurs went to a back five to see the result out. He is expected to make his return against PSV alongside Toby Alderweireld who is struggling without his Belgian counterpart Jan Vertonghen.
Meanwhile, with Danny Rose still injured Ben Davies is expected to start again. On the right side of the defence, Serge Aurier should start after Trippier’s congested fixture list.
Spurs aren’t yet playing the excellent high-intensity football we saw last season. There are reports that a lot of the players are fed up with the uncertainty over the new stadium completion date.
Similarly, this is also a must win game for PSV Eindhoven who are also on one point from three games. Failure to win for either side will eliminate them from the competition.
PSV are flying high in the Eredivisie with 11 consecutive wins under Mark van Bommel and will be looking to build on their 2-2 draw with Spurs, in which they ended the game strongly. If Spurs are to keep PSV at bay they will need to contain Luke de Jong who has scored nine goals from his last 11 games and Lozano who has eight from 11.