Toby Alderweireld

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How will Arsenal, Tottenham lineup?

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Arsenal vs. Tottenham Hotspur. The North London derby. Arsene Wenger vs. Mauricio Pochettino.

[ MORE: Spurs injury update ]

This is it. Arsenal host Spurs this Saturday (Watch live, 7:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) with both teams having plenty of selection headaches.

How will Arsene Wenger and Mauricio Pochettino line up their respective teams?

[ MORE: Wenger – We are not underdogs ]

Here’s a look at our projected starting lineups for both Arsenal and Spurs, with a brief explanation for both.


JPW’s projected Arsenal starting XI

—– Cech —–

—- Holding —- Koscielny —- Monreal —-

— Bellerin — Xhaka — Ramsey — Kolasinac —

—- Ozil —- Sanchez —-

—– Lacazette —–

The Gunners are without the injured Olivier Giroud, but this is a pretty settled team. The main decision for Wenger is will he go all-out attack from the start? Lacazette came off the bench at Man City last time out and scored as well as providing a threat. Surely he has to start in front of Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez. In midfield it will be intriguing to see if Aaron Ramsey starts ahead of one of the more defense-minded trio of Granit Xhaka, Mohamed Elneny and Francis Coquelin. It’s highly-likely he will. Shkodran Mustafi may be fit to make his long-awaited return in central defense.


JPW’s projected Tottenham starting XI

—– Lloris —–

—- Sanchez —- Dier —- Vertonghen —-

— Aurier — Dembele — Winks — Rose —-

—- Eriksen —- Dele —-

—– Kane —–

So many injury concerns for Pochettino but Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Harry Winks and Hugo Lloris all returned to full training on Thursday ahead of this game. That’s a big boost. Losing Toby Alderweireld for longer than expected is not and that will likely see Eric Dier slot into central defense and the duo of Mousa Dembele and Winks deployed in central midfield. The other big call Pochettino has to make is out wide in the wing back positions. He could choose either of Kieran Trippier or Serge Aurier on the right and Ben Davies or Danny Rose on the left. I think he will go for more athleticism in this game given the high intensity of a derby day. That said, can a fiery character like Aurier be trusted in the hostile atmosphere?

Spurs injury update on key players ahead of Arsenal clash

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Heading into Saturday’s North London derby against Arsenal, there are some massive injury concerns for Tottenham Hotspur (Watch live, 7:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

[ MORE: We aren’t underdogs – Wenger ]

Mauricio Pochettino spoke to the media on Thursday and confirmed that Harry Kane, Harry Winks and Dele Alli were back in full training on Thursday for the first time since pulling out of the England squad over the international break.

Hugo Lloris is also back in training much earlier than expected after he missed Spurs’ 1-0 win against Crystal Palace before the international break with the French goalkeeper previously thought to be a long shot to make the NLD, while Michel Vorm is also back in training.

Pochettino stopped short of saying all the players who have returned to training are available for selection on Saturday, but he’s hopeful.

“We are happy because today they make the team for the first time all the players arrive from the international break. We need to assess all of them tomorrow. We have one training session more. We are optimistic but we need to wait to analyse every single case… I hope that tomorrow we can count with them for the game, but still we need to decide between the medical staff, the sports science and us. I am happy because if they cannot play Saturday they are close to play Tuesday or next weekend.”

Pochettino was asked for a percentage figure on Kane being fit to face Arsenal but refused to do that and simply added: “we need to assess him tomorrow to get the best decision, first of all for him and then for the team.”

So, positive news for Pochettino with Kane, Dele, Winks and Lloris close to winning their race to be ready for Saturday’s huge clash at the Emirates Stadium.

However, Pochettino revealed a huge blow for Tottenham as Belgian defender Toby Alderweireld will be out much longer than previously expected after suffering a hamstring injury against Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League.

“Toby is out. We need to assess him but we expect much longer than we first expected. Maybe after Christmas [he will return], that is the expectation,” Pochettino said. “It will be longer. The injury is in his hamstring. Toby feels disappointed and is a little bit sad but in the same way he is focused now on trying to recover and is working hard. He is in the first stage of his rehab and as always with his type of injury we must be cautious.”

Alderweireld aside, Spurs are looking in much better shape than many expected heading into this Saturday’s game. With Kane, Dele and Lloris having a two week break they could well be fresh to kick on again and you’d have to say they are now the slight favorites, especially given Christian Eriksen‘s sublime form over the international break when he scored a hat trick against the Republic of Ireland to lead Denmark to the 2018 World Cup.

Pochettino praises Gazzaniga, resilience of Spurs

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Mauricio Pochettino had his worries ahead of Tottenham’s Sunday morning match versus Crystal Palace, but was confident his men wouldn’t take for granted a win over the Premier League bottom dwellers.

Injuries to Dele Alli, Toby Alderweireld, and captain/goalkeeper Hugo Lloris assured that confidence, and Palace delivered on the threat.

[ MORE: Spurs 1-0 Palace ]

Fortunately for Pochettino and his men, who climbed to 23 points with a 1-0 win, back-up backstop Paulo Gazzaniga was on point in Lloris’ stead.

“He is an unbelievable option to have as a keeper and I am really happy for him and his family that he performed like that,” Pochettino said.

As for the win, here are his words courtesy of the BBC:

“It was a tough game for us after Wednesday. Palace were compact, narrow and played on the counter attack. We had possession, but not many chances. They were fresh after one week to prepare for the game. We had a few problems after the Madrid game and that is why I am so happy with the victory. I am very pleased with an important three points.”

Spurs have won their last three PL home matches at Wembley. There’s a League Cup mess at West Ham in the mix, but also a dominant win over Real Madrid. Let’s call that a wash.

With the North London Derby coming after the international break, healing is the biggest thing on Mauricio Pochettino’s agenda. Harry Kane was wobbled in the Palace win, and the aforementioned names need to return. Though Gazzaniga looked quite decent, Lloris is one of the best goalkeepers in the world.

Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 Crystal Palace: Son leads ailing Spurs

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  • Gazzaniga the star deputy
  • Son scores winner
  • Zaha misses golden chance
  • Kane wobbled, Dele out

Heung-Min Son‘s second half goal was enough to push injury-hit Tottenham Hotspur past Crystal Palace 1-0 at Wembley Stadium early Sunday.

Spurs were without Hugo Lloris, Dele Alli, and Toby Alderweireld for the match but got a star turn from backup keeper Paulo Gazzaniga to aid the effort.

Tottenham remains third, level on points with second place Manchester United, while Palace remains in 20th with four points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Palace could’ve been ahead inside of three minutes, but Mamadou Sakho instinctively took some mustard off his header attempt against a charging Paulo Gazzaniga.

Dele Alli, Hugo Lloris, and Kieran Trippier were all missing with injury, so Harry Kane‘s limping off in the 23rd minute was a scare. Fortunately, he returned to the pitch moments later in a bid to work it out.

Serge Aurier swept a 31st minute cross over the Palace defense to a free Danny Rose, who missed badly.

Gazzaniga made a nice save on Scott Dann‘s strong header off a 36th minute corner.

Heung-min Son and Harry Winks had opportunities before halftime, but failed to deliver a goal.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Andros Townsend forced Gazzaniga into a quality save after an Aurier giveaway just after the break.

And the best chance, cued up again by Aurier, was for Zaha, who dribbled around Gazzaniga but dragged a jumping shot wide of the yawning cage.

Moments later, Gazzaniga palmed away a back post header from Luka Milivojevic.

Spurs took advantage of the let-off, with Son scoring a lovely goal after Danny Rose’s effort was blocked by Palace. Son often slips under the radar, but is a special talent.

Son then missed a break in the 82nd minute, fooling Julian Speroni but hitting his shot off the outside of the net.

Spurs cruise past Real Madrid at Wembley (video)

AP Photo/Frank Augstein
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  • Spurs clinch knockout round berth
  • Dele bags brace
  • Spurs to Dortmund on Nov. 21
  • Real travels to APOEL

Dele Alli scored twice as Tottenham Hotspur dismantled two-time reigning UCL champs Real Madrid 3-1 at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday.

Christian Eriksen scored off a Harry Kane feed to clinch the result and crown Spurs’ place in the knockout rounds.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored in the 80th minute to spoil Hugo Lloris‘ bid for a clean sheet.

[ MORE: Thundering Tottenham dares Wembley to dream ]

Spurs took a hit just after the 20-minute mark, as center back Toby Alderweireld pulled up with an apparent hamstring injury following a 50-50 tussle with Casemiro.

Moussa Sissoko entered the match, and Eric Dier dropped to center back.

Spurs soon had their break through, as a Kieran Trippier cross slid past Marcelo and Sergio Ramos, and Dele outstretched Nacho to push the ball over the line.

[ MORE: Champions League standings

Ronaldo manufactured a pair of chances around the half hour mark, forcing a corner kick from Hugo Lloris before hitting a low shot into the arms of the stooping French goalkeeper.

Kane challenged Kiko Casilla twice as well, the second a bouncing effort in the 36th. He’d have another chance after Sissoko flubbed a gorgeous chance to make it 2-0, but Sergio Ramos blocked the effort.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Dele had a second on an intelligent, daring dribble that culminated with a shot deflected by Sergio Ramos and beyond Casilla.

The hour mark showed just how out of form Real is these days, with Ronaldo missing a pair of terrific chances. The last turned into a goal mouth scramble with several squandered opportunities.

Spurs made it 3-0 on an outstanding counter attack, with Kane showing tremendous patience and better touch on a pass to cue Eriksen up for his first.