Although Tottenham Hotspur have a number of high-profile Premier League fixtures against fellow top-four hopefuls in forthcoming weeks, it is hard to ignore the upcoming Champions League knockout clash against Juventus.
Spurs have been handed last season’s defeated finalists in the next round after topping their group, in what will be a massive challenge for Mauricio Pochettino’s men.
Tottenham should go into the two-legged affair against Juventus full of belief and confidence given their European results this season, but the injury status of one man in the opposition ranks will surely play a part in the task at hand.
The Bianconeri’s attacking talisman Paulo Dybala suffered a thigh strain in a Serie A clash with Cagliari before the Italian winter break and as such is fighting a race against time to be fit to face Spurs on February 13 in the first leg in Turin.
Tottenham supporters will be interested in the latest injury update on Dybala, which Juventus released on Tuesday.
“Dybala and Marchisio are both expected to be out for between 30-40 days after the assessments made in the first week of January,” the statement on the Italians’ website reads.
The prognosis means that it is likely to be touch-and-go whether Dybala is able to face Tottenham in the first game in Italy, with the Argentina international picking up his injury on January 6.
As such, Spurs could well have to deal with the striker if he returns in 30 days, but may have a reprieve if it takes 40.
While Juventus have other top-class attacking options such as Gonzalo Higuain and Mario Mandzukic, Tottenham will feel relatively confident of containing these out-and-out number nines.
However, Dybala’s movement off the ball, creativity, skill and pace make him a much more ominous opponent and as a result Spurs fans will be hoping that the South American does not take to the field on February 13.