Harry Kane and Mousa Dembele have been ruled out of the second leg of Tottenham Hotspur’s Europa League last-32 tie at home to Fiorentina on Thursday.
And the Belgian midfielder is also expected to miss next week’s crucial run of Premier League games, including the North London derby against Arsenal.
Dembele has been in exceptional form this season, and his absence will be a huge boost to the Gunners. Tottenham’s pressing game does not work nearly as well without him.
Kane – Tottenham’s only recognised striker – broke his nose in the FA Cup fifth-round defeat to Crystal Palace on Sunday and will sit out Fiorentina’s visit.
He is expected to be back for the weekend, but Dembele will be sidelined for crucial matches against Swansea City, West Ham United and title rivals Arsenal.
Manager Mauricio Pochettino is quoted as saying by Sky Sports: “Harry will be available for Sunday – we expect and we hope he’s available. Today he wasn’t here because he saw the specialist about his nose.
“On medical advice, it’s impossible for Harry to play tomorrow. In the last few minutes against Crystal Palace he played with a broken nose. Today we need to fix the problem – it’s impossible for him to play tomorrow but he’s available for Sunday.”
On Dembele, Pochettino added: “It’s not a big issue but similar to before. It’s small but we have a lot of games ahead so it’s come at a very bad moment.”
Dembele was substituted at half time against Palace with a groin strain and joins Tom Carroll, Jan Vertonghen and Clinton N’Jie on Tottenham’s injury list.
But goalkeeper Hugo Lloris has returned to training after a minor shoulder problem and helps compensate for the loss of other senior players for the Fiorentina game.
Erik Lamela is also back in contention. The Argentine winger, who has five goals in the Europa League this season, has missed Tottenham’s last two games through illness.
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