Harry Kane and Mousa Dembele have been ruled out of Tottenham’s Europa League last 32 second-leg with Fiorentina.
Spurs coach Maurico Pochettino confirmed in his pre-match press conference the duo would not be available as Spurs welcome the Serie A club to White Hart Lane with the tie level at 1-1.
Kane broke his nose during the FA Cup defeat to Crystal Palace last weekend and will sit out the second leg against Fiorentina, but the striker is expected to return against Swansea on Sunday.
It will be the first time this season Kane has not been named either in the starting line-up or on the bench for a Spurs fixture.
Dembele’s injury, however, is more serious. The midfielder came off at half-time against Palace with a groin injury and is now set to be out for between 10 days and two weeks.
It means the Belgian, a key player in Tottenham’s title charge, will miss Fiorentina and is also facing a race against time to be fit to play Arsenal, who visit White Hart Lane in the league a week on Saturday.
“Harry Kane will be available for Sunday,” Pochettino said.
“We expect and hope he will be available. Today he wasn’t here because he is seeing a specialist about his nose.”
On Dembele, Pochettino added: “On Mousa we expect maybe longer than Harry. Maybe 10 days, two weeks.
“It is not a big issue. A small injury but in this period we have a lot of games ahead so it arrives in a bad moment.”
Tottenham have the slight upper hand against Fiorentina, having taken an away goal from their 1-1 draw in Italy last week.
Pochettino is boosted by the return of goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, who has been struggling with a shoulder injury, and Erik Lamela, who has recovered from a bout of illness.
Tom Carroll, however, is out with an Achilles problem while Jan Vertonghen and Clinton Njie remain sidelined with knee injuries.
The match against Fiorentina, who sit third in Serie A, kicks off a tough run of fixtures for Spurs, who face West Ham, Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United over the next six weeks.
The defeat to Palace ended Tottenham’s eight-match unbeaten run, which included seven consecutive victories, and Pochettino admits his side face a crucial juncture in maintaining their momentum.
“We are in a key period. The period ahead is very important for us, it is a period where we play a lot of important games,” Pochettino said.
“The loss to Palace has not affected the group. We played better than Crystal Palace and we need to keep our motivation because we have important games coming up.”