Boyhood fan Winks set to be involved for curtain-raiser

Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Winks during a training session at Hotspur Way (pic: John Walton/PA Images

Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Winks during a training session at Hotspur Way (pic: John Walton/PA Images). - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

The Tottenham Hotspur midfielder is likely to at least be on the bench for today’s first Premier League match in the new stadium

Midfielder Harry Winks is set to play some part in tonight’s historic match at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The Spurs academy graduate has been absent of late with a groin injury and missed the 2-1 defeat at Liverpool on Sunday.

Winks returned to training this week, however, and is available for selection when Crystal Palace visit N17 for the opening first-team match in the club’s new home.

It will be a special moment for the 23-year-old, who has supported Tottenham all of his life and been an integral part of Mauricio Pochettino’s team this season.

Even though Winks will be included in the squad – most likely on the bench – Spurs will be missing several other players.

Serge Aurier will be absent again with the hamstring injury he picked up playing for Ivory Coast last month.

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Elsewhere, Eric Dier now has a hip flexor issue and is continuing rehabilitation which means he will miss this landmark fixture.

In addition to the aforementioned duo, Erik Lamela is out with a hamstring injury and Fernando Llorente will miss the match too.

After coming on as a substitute during the defeat to Liverpool, the Spaniard suffered a blow to the head and will sit this clash out with concussion.

Despite the lengthy list of absentees, Spurs and Pochettino will have plenty of options to pick from for the first match in the new 62,062-seater venue.

Heung-min Son was a substitute at Anfield last weekend, but may earn a start though Lucas Moura impressed against Liverpool and should keep his spot.

Goalkeeper and captain Hugo Lloris will lead the team out despite his error in the late goal Tottenham conceded in the 2-1 loss to the Reds.

He will hope to have a quiet night, but will have to be on his toes with Palace likely to start former Spurs winger Andros Townsend from the off.

Townsend, like Winks, is a boyhood Tottenham fan and will be desperate to make his mark at the new stadium and will have his sights set on finding the net on what will be a memorable night for everyone associated with the N17 club.