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Harry Kane set to feature in Tottenham squad for north London derby

Published 04/11/2016

Tottenham striker Harry Kane is in contention to face Arsenal on Sunday.
Tottenham striker Harry Kane is in contention to face Arsenal on Sunday.

Mauricio Pochettino has confirmed Tottenham striker Harry Kane will be in the squad to face Arsenal in the north London derby on Sunday.

Pochettino said Kane would at least be named on the bench at the Emirates Stadium and added it would "not be a risk" to play the 23-year-old.

Kane has been out for almost seven weeks with an ankle ligament injury but resumed training with the first-team squad on Monday.

"He will be in the squad," Pochettino said.

"He will be available for Sunday and then I need to decide (whether he should be in the) starting XI or (on the) bench.

"I am happy after yesterday, (it was a) very good training session, he is fit."

Pochettino added: "It would not be a risk to play him. We try to avoid risk. If he is on the pitch or the bench it's because we're sure it's not a risk for him to play.

"In football you can't avoid all risk because it's a contact sport (but if) the doctor said he is available to be selected it's because there is no risk of injury."

Kane's return would come as a huge boost to Tottenham, who have struggled for both form and fluency without their first-choice striker.

Spurs have not found the net from open play in their last five matches and they are winless in their last six in all competitions.

Kane also has an impressive record against Arsenal, notching four goals in three league games against the Gunners and scoring in both league fixtures last season.

"Always it is important to have Harry Kane," Pochettino said.

"In the last few seasons he has been very important for us. He was top scorer in the Premier League (last season) and always the player who is top scorer in the Premier League is important for any club.

"It is true he has a good record against Arsenal. It is important he is back and can help the team get a good result."

Kane is one of a handful of fitness worries for Spurs, who could also be without Toby Alderweireld, Mousa Dembele and Erik Lamela this weekend. Moussa Sissoko remains suspended.

Alderweireld and Lamela are both sidelined with leg and hip injuries respectively while a late decision will be made on Dembele, who came off during the defeat to Bayer Leverkusen in midweek with a foot problem.

Tottenham were well below par against Leverkusen at Wembley and Pochettino admits his players cannot afford a repeat against Arsenal, who have won 10 out of their last 11 games.

"We were poor, we can't play that way against Arsenal," Pochettino said.

"We need to be calm. When you have a period when you don't win games, you need to be calm.

"We need to be very quiet and in the same way critical and assess and be sure for the future to take better decisions.

"It is true we are very young and we are a team in a process where the club is building a massive stadium, an unbelievable stadium, the best in England or in Europe. The team is in the same process.

"We settle the principle and the way to play. The players can be here for the next few seasons and the players need to show more to be here."

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