Tottenham News: Pochettino defends Brighton XI

10 months ago

In the latest Tottenham news, boss Mauricio Pochettino has denied the suggestion his team selection for Tuesday’s draw at Brighton was influenced by this weekend’s FA Cup semi-final.

Spurs missed the chance to go 10 points clear of Chelsea in the race for a Premier League top-four finish at the Amex Stadium, with Harry Kane’s opener on 48 minutes quickly cancelled out by a Pascal Gross penalty two minutes later.

Despite creating a couple of good openings, Pochettino’s men were unable to find a winner, leaving the Argentine to field questions about his team selection.

Tottenham’s team sheet showed six changes from their previous game against Manchester City, with Dele Alli and Davinson Sanchez left out of the squad altogether while Mousa Dembele, Kieran Tripper, Eric Dier and Erik Lamela were dropped to the bench.

In came Toby Alderweireld for his first Premier League start since October while Lucas Moura was handed his first league start since joining from Paris Saint-Germain in January.

Pochettino is expected to revert to a more familiar starting XI for Saturday’s last-four encounter with Manchester United and has denied sending out a weakened team against Brighton due to Tottenham’s cup commitment.

“Some players needed to rest, some players needed to stay on the bench, and I think we have a strong squad,” said Pochettino.

“Everyone is ready to play and it was a moment to give some fresh legs to the team, but we were thinking about trying to win.

“We tried to add to the team fresh legs to match them in the physical condition and I think the season is tough for some players that play a lot.

“But (I am) always thinking about trying to win today, not next Saturday.”

The FA Cup is Tottenham’s last chance to end the season with silverware and they are 5/4 with William Hill to get the better of United inside 90 minutes.