Tottenham Hotspur fans could be treated to the sight of key defender Toby Alderweireld in action on Wednesday night, with the London Evening Standard confirming that the Belgian is in the squad for the FA Cup fourth round replay against Newport County.
The pivotal centre-half has been on the sidelines for the last few months with a hamstring injury, with the former Southampton loanee sorely missed by Spurs.
Alderweireld has proven himself over recent years to be on of the best defenders in the Premier League and Tottenham’s hopes of a top-four finish and silverware this season will be boosted by his return.
That said, reintroducing the Spurs enforcer back into action slowly is the best course of action, with any suggestion that he could be involved from the start this weekend against Arsenal surely premature.
Alderweireld should be on the Tottenham bench if it is deemed that he is fit enough to feature, with a late cameo the ideal way to bring him back in the fold.
The London Evening Standard has also named seven other Spurs first-team players that are expected to start against Newport.
These include Victor Wanyama, Erik Lamela and Fernando Llorente, who all came off the Tottenham bench in the thrilling 2-2 draw against Liverpool on Sunday.
Moussa Sissoko will surely get the nod to play as Pochettino rotates his first-choice players, while those returning from injury such as Serge Aurier, Danny Rose and Harry Winks will be keen for action – and will start according to the report.
The Tottenham manager has stated ahead of Wednesday’s game that he is not obsessed with winning silverware for the club – but this is surely the Argentine trying to reduce pressure on his team.
The FA Cup is an ideal opportunity for Spurs to win their first trophy since 2008 and as such Pochettino must take the replay against Newport seriously.
However, it is a balancing act for the Tottenham manager as high-profile games against Arsenal and Juventus are to be played over the course of the next week.