Jan Vertonghen, Danny Rose and Erik Lamela will remain on the sidelines when Tottenham Hotspur visit KAA Gent on Thursday night (16 February) in the first leg of the Europa League Round of 32 but the three players are all making a good progress in their rehabilitation. Mauricio Pochettino suggested that the Belgium centre-back could be ready to make his return to action in Sunday's FA Cup trip to Fulham.

Vertonghen, 29, has been out of action since suffering an ankle injury during the 4-0 victory over West Bromwich Albion on 14 January, missing the last five games, including the 2-2 draw at Manchester City and the recent defeat to Liverpool.

The Belgium international has also failed to make the trip to Gent but Pochettino expects to welcome him back for the FA Cup fifth round visit to Fulham.

"Jan is very well, maybe Friday he'll start to train with the team and maybe Sunday (against Fulham) he'll be ready to make the starting 11 or to be on the bench. We'll see, but we're very happy," the Tottenham manager confirmed ahead of the game with KAA Gent.

Rose, meanwhile, has also missed the last two games due to a knee injury while Lamela is yet to feature for Tottenham since the previous defeat to Liverpool earlier in October due to a hip problem.

Jan Vertonghen
Jan Vertonghen is expected to return to action against Fulham Getty

The approaching fixtures against KAA Gent and Fulham will still come too early for the duo but Pochettino remains optimistic about having them back soon – although he did no put an exact time frame on their returns.

"Danny Rose is on plan, he's very positive, a good reaction after his injury. Erik Lamela is building step by step, positive too. We're happy with the way they are training."