Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur

Premier League • England

Tottenham injury news: Conte facing big blow as key star a major doubt for north London derby

Dejan Kulusevski, Rodrig Bentancur Tottenham

Tottenham could be missing a key man will then they take on Arsenal in the north London derby on Saturday with a chance to go top of the Premier League.

Victory over the Gunners will take Spurs above their bitter rivals and into top spot, but they may to have cope without one of their more influential players at The Emirates.

Dejan Kulusevski is reportedly a doubt for the game after picking up a suspected hamstring injury.

The winger played in both of Sweden’s Nations League games against Serbia and Slovenia during the international break. However, The Athletic claims he’s returned to the club with the issue.

The report suggests that Kulusevski will be assessed before the lunch-time kick-off and that a decision will be a late one.

Antonio Conte is expected to give an update on the fitness of his players at his presser on Thursday.

If Kulusevski is not good to go it will certainly relieve Conte of a potential headache.

The Swede was picked ahead of Son Heung-min in for the 6-2 victory over Leicester. However, the South Korean scored a hat-trick off the bench in that game and is now seemingly undroppable again.

Speaking about his selections after that game, Conte said: “I don’t like to give explanations to my players. Because otherwise in every game I have to speak to one or another one and another one.

“But I spoke with Deki [Kulusevski] because after three times in a row that you go on the bench, I think that he deserved to feel that my trust, my confidence, was like always.”

Four into three does not go as Kulusevski sweats on fitness

Conte is now likely to start with a front three of Son, Harry Kane and Richarlison again.

Kulusevski, who is being tipped to sign a permanent Tottenham deal, could still force his way into the side as a right wing-back, if fit. However, Conte is more likely to go with the more defensive-minded Emerson Royal away from home.

Conte should also give an update on Hugo Lloris’ fitness ahead of the Arsenal game.

The Tottenham skipper suffered a thigh injury against Leicester and missed France’s last two games.

At this stage, it’s hoped that he will be fit for the game, although Fraser Forster is on standby.

The summer signing has yet to make an appearance for the club but has a wealth of Premier League experience.

As for Arsenal, they also have injury worries ahead of the big game.

Thomas Partey, who has become an integral player in Mikel Arteta’s side, picked up a knock while away with Ghana. Meanwhile, Takehiro Tomiyasu withdrew from the Japan squad.

However, an official statement from the Japan FA made no mention of injury and said he had withdrawn due to ‘club circumstances’.

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