Moussa Sissoko collected a yellow card as Tottenham Hotspur beat Brighton & Hove Albion 2-1 on Boxing Day and will subsequently be suspended when Spurs take on Norwich City on Saturday.
The France international received the yellow card in rather brainless circumstances, really.
He pushed Dan Burn after a shove from the Seagulls defender and then went back for more, with the referee having no hesitation in cautioning the midfielder.
It means that he has now collected five yellow cards this season and has earned himself a ban, along with Harry Winks, who was also carded on the day.
Jose Mourinho, then, needs to reshuffle his pack in the centre of the pitch.
Tanguy Ndombele was omitted from the matchday squad; Mourinho said afterwards that he asked not to be included, per Football.London.
That could mean he is well-rested to face Norwich, although the tone of Mourinho’s comments suggested he wasn’t too impressed with the club record signing’s decision to exclude himself from the squad.
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But with Winks out, too, there is an opportunity to bring in someone like Christian Eriksen or Giovani Lo Celso from the start.
The two playmakers were both introduced as substitutes against Brighton and were central to their side coming from behind and improving after a dismal first-half display. They each injected pace and Lo Celso, in particular, was busy, completing one dribble, winning one tackle and having a pass accuracy of 83%.
Partnering one of the two with Eric Dier, or potentially Ndombele, would allow Mourinho to pair guile with physicality and that simply cannot be a bad thing.
Sissoko’s booking, and Winks’, could be exactly what Spurs needed ahead of their second game in three days.
Meanwhile, Spurs should sell two players in January.