Nuno Espirito Santo will be in the dugout for the first time as Tottenham head coach on Saturday when the team travel to Leyton Orient.
Returning to pre-season training at Hotspur Way last week, Spurs’ preparations will now step up a gear with their opening summer friendly now three days away.
Further matches against Colchester United and MK Dons are to come this month for the Lilywhites, with Premier League rivals Arsenal and Chelsea pencilled in for the start of August as the teams take part in The Mind Series.
Although this summer’s Euro 2020 and the Copa America has meant that Espirito Santo has been without a number of his first-team squad in the first two weeks of pre-season, he still has had a number of regulars at his disposal after they missed out on international selection.
The likes of Dele Alli, Tanguy Ndombele, Steven Bergwijn and Sergio Reguilon have been back since the first day, with a number of the club’s talented academy players stepping up to train alongside the senior stars.
Harry Kane, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Giovani Lo Celso and Davinson Sanchez are all set to return to training around the start of next month after making the final four of the major tournaments, while it shouldn’t be too long before players such as Hugo Lloris, Toby Alderweireld and Joe Rodon are back after their early elimination from the Euros.
So what players does Espirito Santo have available to him for this weekend’s game against Leyton Orient?
Well, the boss has a mixture of experience and youth between the sticks as Joe Hart and Alfie Whiteman have been in training since last week.
Academy goalkeeper Joshua Oluwayemi has also been spotted with the aforementioned duo this week but his potential selection will all depend on whether he’s with the U23s at Ramsgate.
Spurs could potentially be a bit short on cover for right-back Matt Doherty at Leyton Orient as the club have decisions to make over both Serge Aurier and Japhet Tanganga.
The former is expected to return to training this week and it may come too late for him to be involved, while the latter may not be deemed fit enough to play just yet as he’s only just recovered from his ankle injury.
Marcel Lavinier will be an option to play at right-back if Aurier and Tanganga aren’t involved but that may all depend on if he is playing for U23s in their friendly against Ramsgate.
In central defence, Eric Dier is the only senior centre-back in training at present, although Tanganga can operate there if fit, and that will likely mean more minutes for Cameron Carter-Vickers.
Academy players TJ Eyoma, Jubril Okedina, Tobi Omole and Maksim Paskotsi have all trained with the first team at some point over the past fortnight and could quite easily come into the head coach’s plans unless they travel with the U23s for their friendly.
Spurs may still be without Ben Davies at left-back but they have plenty of choice with Reguilon, Ryan Sessegnon and Dennis Cirkin options to choose from.
Tottenham also have good numbers when it comes to central midfield as Ndombele and Harry Winks didn’t play international football over the summer.
Oliver Skipp has been back in training over the past few days and a decision will need to be taken over him following metatarsal surgery in May, with academy players Harvey White, Nile John and Alfie Devine all pushing for minutes this weekend.
Espirito Santo then has a wealth of options to choose from in the attacking areas as Alli, Bergwijn, Erik Lamela, Lucas Moura and Jack Clarke are all available.
However, it’s not clear if Son Heung-min will be given the green light to play as he’s due to return to training this week but the coaching staff may feel it’s best to ease him back in at Hotspur Way rather than throwing him straight into action.
Dane Scarlett and Troy Parrott will be available upfront in Kane’s absence, with fellow youngster Kion Etete a potential option after he was involved in training at the start of the week.
Tottenham players Espirito Santo can choose from for Leyton Orient friendly
Goalkeeper: Joe Hart. Alfie Whiteman, Joshua Oluwayemi
Right-back: Matt Doherty, Serge Aurier, Marcel Lavinier
Centre-back: Eric Dier, Japhet Tanganga, Cameron Carter-Vickers, TJ Eyoma, Jubril Okedina, Tobi Omole, Maksim Paskotsi
Left-back: Sergio Reguilon, Ryan Sessegnon, Dennis Cirkin
Central midfield: Tanguy Ndombele, Harry Winks, Oliver Skipp. Harvey White, Nile John, Alfie Devine
Attacking midfield: Dele Alli, Erik Lamela, Steven Bergwijn, Lucas Moura, Son Heung-min, Jack Clarke
Striker: Troy Parrott, Dane Scarlett, Kion Etete
Source by Football London