Tottenham Hotspur head coach Antonio Conte has been provided with a boost regarding Son Heung-min‘s recovery ahead of Saturday’s FA Cup fourth-round tie at home to Brighton & Hove Albion.
The 29-year-old forward has been ruled out for the last four weeks with a muscle injury sustained in their EFL Cup encounter away at Chelsea at the beginning of January.
However, Son has recently been pictured in first-team training which could mean that he is to be considered for selection this weekend, though a place on the substitutes bench seems more likely should he pass a fitness test.
Centre-back Cristian Romero also has an outside chance of featuring at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, as he has made significant progress in his recovery from a thigh injury, but like Son, the Argentine is unlikely to start against Brighton.
Tottenham’s squad is now a little lighter following the deadline day departures of Dele Alli, Tanguy Ndombele, Giovani Lo Celso and Bryan Gil – who all started in the third-round win against Morecambe last month – but Conte was able to recruit two new players in the form of Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski from Juventus.
Kulusevski, who trained with his new teammates for the first time on Thursday, will be in contention to make his debut after being granted his work permit; however, Bentancur is yet to receive his work permit or take part in training, so it remains to be seen whether he will feature against the Seagulls.
Conte is expected to hand Pierluigi Gollini a start in goal ahead of club captain Hugo Lloris, while Joe Rodon could return to the first XI and join Japhet Tanganga and Ben Davies in the back three, with Matt Doherty and Ryan Sessegnon potentially getting the nod over Emerson Royal and Sergio Reguilon as the wing-backs.
Harry Winks has started the last four matches in centre-midfield and he could remain alongside Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, while talisman Harry Kane will likely lead the line, supported in attack by Lucas Moura and Steven Bergwijn.
Tottenham Hotspur possible starting lineup: Gollini; Tanganga, Rodon, Davies; Doherty, Winks, Hojbjerg, Sessegnon; Moura, Bergwijn; Kane