Crystal Palace

Mauricio Pochettino should finally start this £31.5m-rated Tottenham star against Crystal Palace today

The Tottenham Hotspur fans are feeling confident in the Transfer Tavern ahead of their side’s clash with Crystal Palace today. 

Mauricio Pochettino’s side have put together an excellent run of form in recent weeks and put themselves firmly in the running for a place in the top-four this season. Since suffering a 4-1 defeat against Manchester City in mid-December, Spurs have been on a run of 9 matches without defeat in which they’ve recorded 6 victories.

Tottenham have managed to put together a positive run of results despite the absence of their highly-regarded defender Toby Alderweireld (valued at £31.5 million by Transfermarkt) who has been missing from the first-team squad since the end of October with a hamstring injury.

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The Belgian defender recently made a full return to the first-team by playing 90 minutes against Newport County in a 4th round FA Cup replay. Since then, he’s only taken part in Tottenham’s 5th round clash with Rochdale at Spotland, as he was omitted from the squad to face both Arsenal and Juventus recently.

Pochettino’s decision was understandable as he clearly wants the 28-year-old to return to full-fitness without suffering a set-back, but that will not be possible unless Alderweireld is given plenty of minutes on the pitch to adjust to the pace of the Premier League once again.With that to consider, Pochettino should hand Alderweireld his first league start since he faced Manchester United on the 28th of October when Spurs pit their wits against Crystal Palace today.

Tottenham are not only competing for a place in the top-four this season, but if they complete the job against Juventus in just over two weeks time then they will have a genuine chance of going all the way in the Champions League, and their chances of success in Europe will be significantly boosted by the presence of a fully fit Alderweireld.

Now that Alderweireld has completed 90 minutes on two separate occasions since returning from injury, it seems safe to say that he has fully recovered from his hamstring injury, so he must be handed a starting berth against Palace today to continue his recovery and ensure that he is fully fit for a huge three months that beckon for Tottenham Hotspur.

Thoughts? 

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