Kaboul, Yedlin? What options do Spurs have at right back after Naughton’s injury?

Tottenham Huddle

Spurs are down to the bare bones at fullback with their two specialist right sided defenders out injured.

With the news Kyle Naughton has been ruled out for a lengthy period of time after injuring his ankle ligaments against Southampton, Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino will have to get creative to identify who will be his first choice and reserve options at right back until the existing fullbacks return to fitness.

He may not be everyone's favourite defender, but Naughton seemed to have improved under the Argentine, putting in a notable performance against Arsenal at the Emirates and looking to be the favoured option considering Kyle Walker's continued absence.

With the two former Sheffield United players now set to keep each other company in the treatment room for the foreseeable future, Tottenham are left with precious few options at right fullback, at least when looking at players established in that position.

It is likely Eric Dier will continue to deputise on the right side of the defence for Pochettino's men, with the 20-year-old having done an impressive job in various games this season. However, there is no denying that Dier is most at home in the middle of the defence, and given his large, powerful frame, he is likely to experience testing matches against the division's quick and agile wingers, much like he did against Raheem Sterling earlier in the season.

Staying within the club, Younes Kaboul made several appearances at right back under Harry Redknapp, and didn't do a bad job at all with Spurs qualifying for the Champions League that season. However, Kaboul is only recently coming into form at centre back after a long time short of fitness, so may not wish to switch to a position that is more athletically demanding.

Tottenham do have a surplus of central defenders that could step in to Kaboul's shoes though, with Federico Fazio still yet to make his Premier League debut. Another centre back, Vlad Chiriches, could also do a job on the right hand side, where his tendency to go forward will be less of a risk than when he occupies one of the two positions in the middle of the back four.

If Spurs do want to make adjustments to their current playing staff in light of their defensive injuries, it could see Ryan Fredericks returning from his loan at Middlesbrough, or possibly even an attempt to push forward the arrival of US international DeAndre Yedlin, though the likelihood of the Seattle Sounders star arriving before next summer may depend on how well the MLS side do in the chase for the MLS Cup.

Whatever happens, Naughton's injury is a headache Pochettino would have rather done without.

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