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Tottenham return to Europa League action tonight (5.55pm kick-off) against Dinamo Zagreb following the disappointment of their north London derby defeat to Arsenal at the weekend. Losing to the Gunners was a gut punch to Spurs’ top-four hopes and they will be looking to make sure of their spot in the last eight in Europe this evening. Express Sport looks at how Jose Mourinho could line up, with Harry Kane potentially on the bench in Croatia.
Hugo Lloris should keep his spot in goal for Tottenham against Zagreb, although Mourinho admitted he felt bad for leaving Joe Hart out in the reverse tie.
The Portuguese said: “I felt bad for my decision not to play Joe Hart. [He is] one of the best goalkeepers in this country, no doubt one of the best English goalkeepers.
“I didn’t want to play him not because of a question of trust but more because of a feeling to the dressing room that I couldn’t change 11 players, the game is difficult.”
Despite that, the Frenchman should keep his spot in between the sticks given the importance of the game for Spurs.
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Defence: Aurier, Sanchez, Dier, Davies
After being benched by Matt Doherty against Arsenal, Serge Aurier should return at right-back here.
Similarly, left-back Ben Davies was an unused substitute in the league but the Welshman has played in every single Europa League match so far this season, captaining the team on five occasions.
In between the two full-backs, Davinson Sanchez has emerged as Mourinho’s most-used central defender of late.
Toby Alderweireld should be rested however to allow Eric Dier a return to the team for the same centre-back partnership – and back four – that played in the previous leg.
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Midfield: Sissoko, Ndombele
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg is suspended after picking up a yellow card off the bench in the home match and so the Croatian will remain in London.
Harry Winks is a contender to come into the side but Tanguy Ndombele may be asked to go again, despite looking tired of late, to provide some attacking spark from deep.
Moussa Sissoko could then come in to provide the energy alongside Ndombele with Winks and Giovani Lo Celso then options to replace either Frenchman after the break.
Attack: Moura, Alli, Lamela; Vinicius
Son Heung-min is another absentee for Spurs due to a hamstring problem sustained early on against Arsenal at the weekend.
The South Korean is also unlikely to play against Aston Villa on Sunday and Lucas Moura may start here with Steven Bergwijn then an option to start on the left at the weekend.
On the right-hand side, Gareth Bale may get a rest after struggling to make his mark in the north London derby.
Erik Lamela should start with the Argentine unable to play in the league after being sent off because of two yellows at Arsenal.
Dele Alli has played well in Europe and will start in the No 10 role with Mourinho’s biggest decision coming up top.
Carlos Vinicius will hope for an opportunity through the middle after Harry Kane scored twice in the previous match.
Given it is a high-stakes match, leaving Kane out may be viewed as a contentious decision but the on-loan Brazilian has six goals and three assists in eight Europa League games this season.
Kane and Bale can then come on from the bench if needed, though Spurs’ two-goal advantage makes them huge favourites to progress to the quarter-finals.
Predicted Tottenham XI vs Dinamo Zagreb (4-2-3-1): Lloris; Aurier, Sanchez, Dier, Davies; Sissoko, Ndombele; Moura, Alli, Lamela; Vinicius
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