Paul Robinson believes Matt Doherty’s unavailability is a massive blow for Tottenham Hotspur’s chances of getting a decent result against Manchester City on Saturday.
It was revealed on Monday that Doherty was one of two players in the Republic of Ireland squad to test positive for COVID-19, along with Stoke City winger James McClean, and would thus not be available for this weekend’s clash (Sky Sports).
Some Spurs fans were livid to hear the news, with a few fearing the worst since the defender had been in action against Gareth Bale, Ben Davies and Joe Rodon on Sunday in Wales 1-0 Nations League win over Ireland.
Jose Mourinho was understandably not too pleased with the news either as the Spurs boss took to Instagram to sarcastically praise the way in which the international fixtures had been organised.
Robinson believes that Doherty will be a major miss for Mourinho’s men on Saturday as the 26-year-old has been one of Tottenham’s best players so far this season.
The former Spurs goalkeeper told Football Insider: “It is devastating news for Doherty because he has hit the ground running for Spurs.
“He has been one of their best players this season.
“Spurs were looking to offload Serge Aurier in the summer but it looks like it has worked in their favour because they could be without Doherty for a couple of games now.
“It is a real blow for them going into the game against Manchester City because Doherty and Hojbjerg have been their best players this year.
“A massive blow for Spurs but it gives Serge Aurier a chance to come back into the team.”
Spurs Web Opinion
To say that Doherty has been one of our best players this season is certainly an exaggeration but the former Wolves man was showing some signs over the past few weeks that he has settled into his new surroundings. His areal prowess combined with his energy certainly makes him an upgrade over Aurier in our current system.
However, I am not convinced that losing him will be a major blow for us against City as we will likely have to defend deep on Saturday and look to hit them on the counter. Aurier is arguably better defensively in one vs one situations than Doherty. Jose might have started with the Ivorian anyway given that Doherty might have played three times for Ireland during the international break if he had not contracted the virus.
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