Tuesday, 23 October, 2018

Disaster For Mauricio Pochettino As Injuries Obliterate Tottenham Squad To Face Barcelona

Leo Messi of FC Barcelona reacts during the La Liga match between FC Barcelona and Athletic Club de Bilbao at Camp Nou Spurs missing a number of players for Barcelona game
| 03 October, 2018, 12:53

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has urged his players to walk out with a smile on their faces against Barcelona.

Still, the Spurs boss is boosted by the return of goalkeeper Lloris for the Group B fixture in Europe, with the France global available for selection after returning to training.

Tottenham will be without four key players when they aim to kick-start their Champions League campaign against Barcelona on Wednesday.

Dele Alli (hamstring), Serge Aurier (thigh), Mousa Dembele (thigh), Christian Eriksen (abdomen) and Jan Vertonghen (hamstring) will all be out until after this month's global break.

The World Cup victor missed his side's Champions League opener, as they let slip a one-goal advantage in the closing stages to lose 2-1 to Inter in Milan.

Spanish champions Barca opened with a 4-0 win over PSV, courtesy of a Lionel Messi hat-trick, and although they have failed to register a win in their last three games now sit joint top of La Liga with Real Madrid.

"It's very clear, very simple, we need to be near him when he gets the ball".


Harry Kane is desperate to outshine Lionel Messi at Wembley - and then start chasing the Barcelona superstar's records.

"It is a period when we are not having good luck with injuries", Pochettino said.

"Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have gone above the norm, when they're scoring 50 or 60 goals a season", said Kane.

"He's set the standard".

Messi has scored 103 Champions League goals, more than any other player, and has eight hat tricks in the competition. "This is Barca. We have enough players, we don't need to depend on one".

England captain Kane has been the Premier League's top scorer for two of the last three seasons and won the Golden Boot at the World Cup in Russian Federation.

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