Vertonghen expected to miss clash with Cherries

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino assists Jan Vertonghen after a head injury during the

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino assists Jan Vertonghen after a head injury during the Champions League semi-final, first leg at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium (pic: Mike Egerton/PA Images). - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

The Belgian suffered a head injury during the first half of Tuesday’s Champions League semi-final first leg with Ajax

Tottenham Hotspur will assess Jan Vertonghen ahead of Saturday’s trip to AFC Bournemouth in the Premier League, but the likelihood is the defender will be unable to feature in the lunchtime kick-off.

The centre back was forced off in the 39th minute on Tuesday after suffering a collision with team-mate Toby Alderweireld and Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onona.

After receiving eight minutes of treatment, Vertonghen tried to carry on, but soon waved to the bench and signalled he needed to be replaced.

For a moment, he appeared to lose his balance and was hunched over and helped from the pitch by boss Mauricio Pochettino and club staff.

Initial tests for concussion came back all clear, but Spurs this afternoon confirmed he will be assessed again to see if he is available to start against Bournemouth.

On Wednesday, Vertonghen tweeted: “Not the way I wanted the game to go. I’m feeling okay today. Thanks to both sets of fans for the positive messages.”

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If the ex-Ajax defender doesn’t recover in time to play on Saturday, he will join Harry Kane, Erik Lamela, Harry Winks and Serge Aurier on the sidelines.

Kane continues to undergo rehabilitation following ankle ligament damage and there are no indications he will be back before the end of the Premier League season on May 12.

Lamela is still out with a hamstring injury, but he is taking part in on-field rehabilitation while right-back Aurier, another unavailable due to a hamstring problem, is in the final stages of conditioning and so may return shortly.

Winks, who underwent groin surgery on Monday, is recovering still and won’t be fit for the rest of the league season.

Spurs boss Pochettino will welcome back Vincent Janssen into the fold at Bournemouth and he could be in line for another appearance.

Heung-min Son will be available again, after he missed Tuesday’s game with Ajax due to suspension, but Tottenham will be cautious with him.

The South Korean has been one of the Lilywhites players of the season and Spurs need him fit and raring to go in Amsterdam next week.

Moussa Sissoko is another who may be managed after he only returned from a groin issue in the first half of the Champions League tie at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

If he is rested or left on the bench, Eric Dier may get a starting role and Pochettino’s side know a win against the Cherries will guarantee a top-four finish.

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