Mauricio Pochettino: Dele Alli can play false nine like Lionel Messi

Jan 21, 2019, 01:00
Mauricio Pochettino: Dele Alli can play false nine like Lionel Messi

Spurs play Chelsea in the Carabao Cup semi-final second leg at Stamford Bridge on Thursday, leading 1-0 from the first leg, and Pochettino is already resigned to being without Harry Kane, who has an ankle ligament injury, and Son Heung-min, who is on worldwide duty with South Korea at the Asian Cup.

Kane's absence could not come at a worse time for manager Mauricio Pochettino with Son Heung-min away at the Asia Cup, potentially until the end of the month, with South Korea.

Pochettino, though, praised the performance of Llorente, who looked likely to leave during the January transfer window prior to Kane's injury, having told the media he was open to re-joining Athletic Bilbao.

"Chelsea played against us with Eden Hazard like a striker, when Olivier Giroud was on the bench and Alvaro Morata was out of the squad".

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Fulham on the other hand are seven points off safety and look set to return to the Championship after just one season back in the top flight.

"That's important and, of course, we want all the players fit but these situations can happen and we need to be strong enough to show that sport is about collective effort and we have a very good opportunity to show that that is true", the 46-year-old added.

"We are positive, we can cope and we have players who can cover his position". It's not that you have to play one specific striker.

Aleksandar Mitrovic headed home the rebound, but the offside flag was raised against the Serbian striker.

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N'Koudou certainly made an impact as his superb cross found Harry Winks, who netted a late victor for Pochettino's men deep in stoppage time with a close range header.

Spurs improved after the break and they levelled in the 51st minute, Tim Ream's fluffed clearance allowing Christian Eriksen to float a cross to Alli at the back post for a simple header.

"But at the moment I think there's not too many possibilities to add this type of player that can improve us".

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