Andre Villas-Boas is confident Danny Rose will be fully fit to face Cardiff City this weekend. But what if he doesn't make it?
Spurs’ Portuguese boss would have felt his heart sink when Rose signalled that he needed to be subbed of during the Europa League clash against Tromso last night.
Rose turned an ankle and immediately signalled to the bench, leading to fears that he’d picked up a serious injury which the boss said he was optimistic about after the game.
“Danny (Rose) will be reassessed tomorrow, his ankle hasn't swollen up a lot so hopefully it should be okay,” said AVB.
However, should Rose not be able to play against Cardiff due to a complication, it’s not all hands to the pump because Tottenham have options.
There are players in the current first team squad who can cover at left back and do a respectable job in that position.
The most obvious is Jan Vertonghen, a player who has played down the left before and a defender who is good enough to do that job well with jeopardising the shape and integrity of Tottenham’s back four.
Vertonghen knows how to occupy that space effectively, staying close to the centre backs when necessary and pressing wingers without leaving a lot of space in behind himself.
Another defensive option is asking Kyle Naughton to switch flanks filling in at left back with Kyle Walker over on the right.
It’s unnatural because he’s a right sided player but again, it links in with the understanding of the full back position and Naughton would surely relish the chance to start another game.
There is also the option of asking a defensively minded midfielder to play in that position although that would be a far greater risk than switching Vertonghen over to that side with a defensive midfielder dropping back into the heart of the defence.
The other option is activating any call back clause that was put into the loan deal for Benoit Assou-Ekotto to go to Queens Park Rangers.
Assou-Ekotto is one of the most experienced players that Tottenham currently own at left back and he may relish the chance to play for the Tottenham first team again, proving why they were wrong to ever loan him out in the first place.
If Rose is fit then he’ll play but it’s not the end of the world if AVB doesn’t feel it’s worth taking a risk with the youngster.
Who would you play at left back if Rose was unavailable?
image: © Gypsy Saskia