Nuno Espirito Santo has admitted that Lucas Moura’s return from injury is a big boost for his side ahead of the North London derby.
Tottenham’s 3-0 losses against Crystal Palace and Chelsea have piled the pressure on the Spurs boss after a promising start to his reign at the North London club.
However, the Portuguese coach was without some of his key men for the trip to Selhurst Park while the likes of Cristian Romero, Davinson Sanchez and Giovani Lo Celso having arrived back in the UK after their isolation just a day before last Sunday’s London derby.
Nuno admitted that the lack of options did hinder his side’s preparations over the last couple of weeks.
When asked about the return of Moura, the 47-year-old told Football.London: “What truly helps is that you have more options. As many options as you have, the more solutions you can provide,
“We didn’t have, not only in attack but in defence, we had some problems. We had to adapt after the international break.
“What I believe is having all the squad, all the players available, gives you more options in terms of how you want to start, what options we have to change, eventually creating different plans because the players are what can change the dynamic of the game.
“Having Lucas back gives you another option, and a very good option because Lucas is a very talented player.”
Nuno also weighed in on the debate surrounding heading restrictions in football in light of proven links between heading the ball and players developing dementia later in their lives.
Professional clubs have now reportedly been advised to limit ‘high force’ headers to 10 per training week.
The Spurs boss admitted, however, that he does not count the headers in training, insisting that heading was an essential part of the game.
When asked if the advisory limits had affected the team’s set-piece training, Nuno responded: “Good question. That’s why we have training sessions without nobody seeing us.
“I agree [with the limits]. I’m concerned with the situation of dementia and what heading the ball can cause.
“It’s a big concern for us but it’s part of the game. Honestly, I will not lie to you. I don’t count how many times our players head the ball.
“Maybe I will get myself in trouble for this, but football is jumping, heading, it’s part of the game.”
Spurs Web Opinion
The debate surrounding heading is too complicated for a simple solution. It is not as easy as banning headers from training as it would be difficult to enforce such a ban, which will mean that teams who do practice heading more, could have a major advantage in set-pieces or other game situations.
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