Problems for Tottenham Hotspur and boss Mauricio Pochettino, but no excuses at APOEL Nicosia

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino speaks to the press (pic: Steven Paston/PA Images).

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino speaks to the press (pic: Steven Paston/PA Images). - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Spurs are without several key players, but should have enough strength in depth to stay on track to progress in the Champions League

Tottenham Hotspur's Dele Alli (left) and West Ham United's Mark Noble battle for the ball during the

Tottenham Hotspur's Dele Alli (left) and West Ham United's Mark Noble battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the London Stadium. - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Tottenham Hotspur have all sorts of problems ahead of their latest Champions League Group H match tonight.

Spurs are already in Cyprus ready to take on APOEL Nicosia in what is a must-win game if they are to progress into the last 16 of the competition.

Mauricio Pochettino has taken a depleted squad for the match, however, with Christian Eriksen the latest to join the absentee list.

The Dane is ill and remained in London alongside six other players due to injuries or suspensions.


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Jan Vertonghen’s red card during the 3-1 win over Borussia Dortmund on September 13 means he’ll sit out this match, while Dele Alli continued to serve a ban.

This will be the second match the England international has missed, so he’ll only have one more game to serve before he can return to European action.

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Long-term absentees Erik Lamela (hip) and Danny Rose (knee) are still unavailable and Victor Wanyama continues to struggle with his knee problem.

Mousa Dembele didn’t play at the weekend at West Ham United due to an ankle issue and he remains on the sidelines.

It leaves Pochettino with problems all over the pitch and Argentinean Juan Foyth appears set to make his Champions League debut later this evening.

The 19-year-old only made his first start for Tottenham last Tuesday during a 1-0 win over Barnsley in the third round of the English Football League Cup.

But injury and suspension problems means Foyth is likely to play as part of a back three in Cyprus with Toby Alderweireld and Davinson Sanchez.

Serge Aurier, after his red card on Saturday, will be at right wing-back with Kieran Trippier rested ahead of visiting Huddersfield United this weekend.

Ben Davies will be Tottenham’s left wing-back with Eric Dier expected to be in the middle and Harry Winks alongside him.

Heung-min Son and Moussa Sissoko are likely to be further forward and tasked with supporting Harry Kane.

Spurs still have a fairly strong squad with the likes of Fernando Llorente on the bench along with Georges-Kevin Nkoudou and Trippier.

And Pochettino was keen to make no excuses ahead of facing APOEL, he said: “The win against Dortmund was so important and it’s key for our future in the Champions League to win again.

“Of course we will miss the players who are not here, but it’s about the collective and it’s important to deal with it.”

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