Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has been handed another major blow after Japhet Tanganga was ruled out of the Premier League clash with Manchester United.
According to an exclusive from The Telegraph, Tanganga has sustained a stress fracture to his back and he will miss the match against the Red Devils as a result.
Last week, BBC revealed that Spurs star Dele Alli has been banned for the game against Mourinho’s old club following a post on social media about coronavirus. As it stands, this latest development spells further bad news for Mourinho.
It is fair to say that Tanganga has been one of the very few success stories in an otherwise difficult period for the Lilywhites. After impressing the manager in his debut against league leaders Liverpool, he has been deployed in a number of different positions across the back.
Having been handed his competitive debut by former boss Mauricio Pochettino in the Carabao Cup, the 21-year-old has played six games in the Premier League so far, making 2.8 tackles per game, averaging 1.8 interceptions and completing a staggering 4.8 clearances per game on average (via WhoScored).
Alasdair Gold recently revealed that he is now part of the club’s plans for the future, despite the fact he was only given a one-year-deal last summer. Indeed, Spurs have reportedly activated an option in that agreement to keep him in north London for at least another year.
Nevertheless, he suffered an injury during training ahead of the Premier League’s return next week, at a time when Mourinho arguably needs him the most.
Mourinho has been plagued by persistent injury setbacks, with Harry Kane, Son Heung-min, Moussa Sissoko and Steven Bergwijn all missing a large chunk of the season so far.
At the moment, the Lilywhites sit in eighth in the table, four points behind his former club Manchester United, who are now managed by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. Spurs have lost the last two meetings between the teams, which could be playing on Mourinho’s mind, as they must win on Friday to keep their chances of a top four finish alive.
Adding insult to injury, Tanganga will be unable to play and the manager may be forced to use Jan Vertonghen instead. The wantaway veteran has fallen out of favour with the head coach in recent months and Mourinho may have to swallow his pride just weeks after calling off talks with Vertonghen’s representatives.
Although it can’t be helped, the Englishman’s injury couldn’t have come at a worse time for the club as they enter the crunch stage of the competition.
Tottenham fans, do you think Tanganga will be sorely missed against Man United? Let us know in the comments below!
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