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Pochettino handed major injury boost as key player is available for West Ham selection after returning from injury

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Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Mousa Dembele is available to feature in Thursday night’s Premier League derby clash with West Ham United after recovering from his latest injury setback, the club have confirmed.

The Belgian midfielder has endured a stop-start season and was substituted in the 5-2 win over Southampton on Boxing Day, having gone down clutching his leg.

Speaking after the victory over Saints, Pochettino gave an update on why the 30-year-old had to go off.

“He suffered a problem in his hip and groin, that is why he had to get off the pitch,” said the Spurs boss.

“We are assessing him today. He’s not training with the group and he’s another doubt for Tuesday.”

Following his absence in Tuesday’s win over Swansea City, it is highly unlikely Dembele would be thrown directly into action following his return but he could well be named on the bench against the Hammers today.

It has been a frustrating stop-start 2017-18 campaign thus far for the skillful Belgian midfielder.

Dembele underwent surgery during the summer on a persistent foot problem that plagued him throughout last season.

The ex-Fulham man also missed more than a month of action with an ankle complaint earlier this term before suffering a hip injury that left him unable to cope with the intensity of the training.

Meanwhile, Harry Kane is understood to have shown no ill-effects after coming on in the 67th minute at the Liberty Stadium.

The England international was on the bench at Swansea after struggling with a cold in the lead-up to the match but made his presence felt after his introduction, providing an assist for Dele Alli.

Victor Wanyama

While Kane could start against West Ham, Dembele may have to be content with a place among the substitutes, alongside Victor Wanyama, who made only his third appearance of the season on Tuesday night, having finally recovered after four months out due to a knee injury.

It wasn’t the best game for him to return in, but the Kenyan came through his half an hour of football unscathed.

As well as confirming that the player is available for selection, Spurs gave an update on the fitness of Toby Alderweireld and Danny Rose.

The Belgian centre-back is continuing his return from injury with outdoor work, while Rose is undergoing an assessment on his knee.

With Wanyama and Dembele back to the squad after recovering from their respective injuries, Pochettino has a lot of midfield options to select from against West Ham.

Our gaffer will have a big decision to make, but we are very likely to see Wanyama start in the midfield alongside Eric Dier.


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