Dele Alli faces a late fitness test prior to Tottenham Hotspur’s clash with Newcastle United in the Premier League, per the London Evening Standard.
The England international has yet to play for Spurs in 2019/20 due to a hamstring injury.
Alli sustained the problem in pre-season, per the report, and has yet to be included in Mauricio Pochettino’s matchday squad.
Spurs instead deployed Erik Lamela as an attacking midfielder in the 3-1 win over Aston Villa and the Argentine played there again as the club drew 2-2 with Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium.
Alli struggled with injuries in 2018/19, too, missing four Premier League games with a hamstring injury at the beginning of the season – against Liverpool, Huddersfield Town, Cardiff City and West Ham United – while he later missed six games with a thigh muscle strain as the campaign drew to a close.
In total, Alli made 25 top-flight appearances last season, scoring five goals and registering three assists.
Alli’s absence again increases the prospect of Lamela featuring for Spurs.
The Argentine has been in excellent form at the beginning of the campaign, scoring against Manchester City and also laying on the assist for Lucas Moura’s equaliser in the draw.
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One feels that such form should have been rewarded regardless of the Englishman’s fitness, but this almost confirms his selection.
As the season progresses, Lamela will have to continue proving his worth, especially when Alli is back to full fitness and summer signing Giovani Lo Celso is up to speed.
On Sunday, he is likely to have another chance to do just that.