Thursday marks the start of a crucial four days in the context of Mauricio Pochettino’s first season at Tottenham, and it starts in Florence, the second leg of our last 32 Europa League clash with Fiorentina. The Argentine boss will have to make many selection decisions ahead of Sunday’s Capital One Cup Final clash with Chelsea. Here is the team news and predicted line-up.
Mauricio Pochettino has a fully fit squad to chose his starting eleven from. However, he has left Brad Friedel, Younes Kaboul, Etienne Capoue, Cristian Ceballos, DeAndre Yedlin and Emmanuel Adebayor all back in London.
Predicted Line-Up (4-2-3-1):
Goalkeeper: Michel Vorm:
With goalkeepers, it’s not really about fatigue and fitness as to who you pick to start. Although your initial decision would be to start Hugo Lloris, Michel Vorm has guided us through most of the cup rounds, and therefore, I think he should start in between the sticks in Florence.
Defence: Kyle Walker, Federico Fazio, Eric Dier, Ben Davies:
Eric Dier has proved to us all in recent weeks that he is a capable defence. Although I do not think he will start regularly in the Premier League, he is a great player to have in your squad should injuries plague your defence. Federico Fazio has been involved in a recent battle with Eric Dier for a Premier League starting spot, and I think the former Sevilla man could resume normal service very soon.
Midfield (Holding): Benjamin Stambouli, Paulinho:
I expect Pochettino to mix things up a bit for this second leg ahead of the cup final on Sunday, and the first big changes to the side could be made here in the holding midfield. Ryan Mason and Nabil Bentaleb should be rested ahead of the showdown against Chelsea, giving Paulinho and Benjamin Stambouli a run-out in the side after spells out of the side.
Midfield (Attacking): Andros Townsend, Mousa Dembele, Nacer Chadli:
This attacking three could be much changed come Sunday. However, Nacer Chadli could remain, and I think he should start against Fiorentina to gain some much needed playing time ahead of the final. Mousa Dembele has been playing well recently, but could miss out on a cup final spot.
Striker: Roberto Soldado:
This is a good chance for the Spaniard to build on his volley last week in the first leg. He could well start up top to rest a player called Harry Kane.