Key Tottenham defender out

December 13, 2017


LONDON, England (AP):

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino says key defender Toby Alderweireld will not return from injury until February.

The Belgium centre back injured a hamstring in a Champions League match against Real Madrid on November 1.

Tottenham's defence has kept just one clean sheet in six English Premier League matches since.

Pochettino said yesterday "We cannot change the reality. The reality is that he is injured and cannot play until February. ... Some players have more influence on the team, but we have squad enough and players who can play."

Alderweireld will miss at least nine league matches, including those against Manchester City and Manchester United. Tottenham play Juventus in the last 16 of the Champions League, with the first leg on today.

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