Toby Alderweireld
Injury has limited Tottenham defender Toby Alderweireld to only 10 Premier League appearances in 2017-18 ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images


  • Tottenham centre-back doubtful for Crystal Palace trip after failing to finish a training session on Thursday.
  • Alderweireld has played just twice in the FA Cup since returning from an initial three-month hamstring lay-off.
  • Manchester United have once again been linked with the 28-year-old amid Spurs contract stalemate.

Tottenham Hotspur will assess Toby Alderweireld before Sunday's (25 February) Premier League London derby against Crystal Palace after the influential defender suffered another injury setback in training.

Alderweireld, 28, has made just two appearances - in FA Cup ties against lower-tier Football League opposition in Newport County and Rochdale - since returning from a hamstring tear earlier this month and was left out of the matchday squad for the narrow win over rivals Arsenal and the Champions League last-16 first-leg comeback draw with Serie A giants Juventus in Turin.

The versatile Belgium international would surely have expected to make his first top-flight appearance for nearly four months against relegation battlers Palace at Selhurst Park this weekend, though he is now rated as doubtful as the result of a fresh issue that prevented him from completing a training session at Hotspur Way on Thursday.

"It was only Toby yesterday that could not finish the training session," manager Mauricio Pochettino told reporters at his pre-match press conference when asked for an injury update, per

"He suffered a small incident in the same leg. We are going to assess him today and tomorrow. We will see if he's available for training and if it's possible to be selected for the weekend. We hope it's not a big issue."

Asked to rate his chances of being fit to face Palace, he said: "Look I told you, we are going to assess him tomorrow and until tomorrow we cannot decide anything, if it's possible to be, first of all to be training and second to be available to play."

Pochettino added that he believed the problem was affecting a "different area" on the same leg as that previous injury and insisted he was "not involved in negotiations" regarding Alderweireld's contract amid renewed reports from the Manchester Evening News that Manchester United are prepared to take advantage of such a standoff and bid for his services in the summer.

Spurs have no other injury worries to contend with ahead of their short trip from north to south east London, though the manager admits that a potential first league start for £23m ($32.1m) January signing Lucas Moura also depends on a pre-game assessment after he played 71 minutes on his full debut in the last-gasp 2-2 draw at Rochdale last weekend.

The Brazilian's only previous involvement before that fifth-round cup tie at Spotland came with a one-minute substitute cameo against Juventus.

"We need to assess him too because he played 70 minutes after a long, long period that he didn't play," Pochettino said. "We need to assess him. We'll see. We have another training session tomorrow and we need to assess all the players.

"We have nearly everyone fit, nearly 24 players in a position to be selected, and of course we need to assess everyone and then we need to pick 18 players to play against Palace on Sunday."