Pochettino’s England plea

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According to an article in The Telegraph Mauricio Pochettino is urging England manager Gareth Southgate not to take any unnecessary risks with star striker Harry Kane in the upcoming international friendlies after bringing the attacker off early against Crystal Palace following a heavy first-half challenge by Timothy Fosu-Mensah.

Kane, who missed our previous Premier League match against Manchester United as well as the Carabao Cup defeat to West Ham due to a hamstring injury, soldiered on, however Pochettino hopes the England hierarchy will take a long-term view in the friendlies against Germany and Brazil.

The in-form Dele Alli has already withdrawn from the squad (with a hamstring injury) and midfielder Harry Winks has added to the casualty list after was forced off at half-time against Palace with a twisted ankle. The young midfielder must now be assessed by both club and Football Association doctors before his availability will be decided.

Of Kane, Pochettino said: “It’s a difficult situation. For us, we are ­focusing on our problems and our injuries, but I also understand ­completely what the national team wants and needs.
“The most important thing is the national teams understand the needs of our players and help them so they will be fit when they return. The next period of the season is very tough on the players.

Pochettino added “We try to explain the situation and then trust in them that they can help our players. Harry was substituted after 75 minutes to protect him after Real Madrid. It was such an emotional game and it is better to avoid a risk.”

The article adds that Pochettino is happy for Winks join up with England, but he is clearly a major doubt. “At the moment it is extremely painful,”: he said. “He is so excited to make the national team it but it is up to the medical people.”

It adds that Poch said that Alli had been feeling pain in the posterior muscle around his hamstring, even before scoring twice against Real Madrid. “It is a very small thing – we hope treatment will go well in the next two weeks and he will be fit to play against Arsenal,”

We are certainly the walking wounded at the minute and you would hope Gareth Southgate sees sense. I’m sure Winks is itching to play but neither he nor Kane need to be risked. The two weeks should surely be used as rest so they are ready to go for Arsenal.

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