Dejan Kulusevski absence for Man Utd v Tottenham explained by Ange Postecoglou | Football

Tottenham star Dejan Kulusevski is struggling with an illness (Picture: Getty)

Tottenham have been dealt a major blow for their trip to Manchester United, with Dejan Kulusevski ruled out of the Premier League clash due to an illness.

Spurs bounced back from their 4-2 defeat to Brighton with a convincing 3-1 victory over Bournemouth in their last top-flight outing and are looking for a third straight win in all competitions after beating Burnley in the FA Cup in midweek.

But Kulusevski, one of Tottenham’s star players this season, will be forced to sit it out Old Trafford after a sickness swept through Ange Postecoglou’s squad in the lead-up to the game.

The north London club have, though, been boosted by the return of both Romero and Micky van de Ven in defence, with January arrival Timo Werner starting up front for the visitors at Old Trafford.

On Kulusevski’s absence, Postecoglou told Sky Sports: ‘He’s been ill the past couple of days.

‘We had it run through the team and unfortunately he copped the worst of it so he’s forced to miss out.’

Werner starts in attack for Spurs at Old Trafford (Picture: Getty)

Postecoglou is hopeful loan signing Werner can hit the ground running in Spurs colours given his previous experience of Premier League football with London rivals Chelsea.

‘At the moment, with the kind of numbers we’ve got, he’s a Premier League player so just having that experience… playing at venues like this, he understands the Premier League,’ the Australian added.

‘Putting him in straight away will help us.’

Postecoglou’s side are looking for a third straight win in all competitions (Picture: Getty)

On the return of Romero and Van de Ven at centre-back, Postecoglou went on: ‘It’s good to have them both back.

‘Obviously when they were playing together at the start of the season it was a big part of the way we set ourselves up, defensively and with he ball.

‘It’s great to have them both back. Obviously they haven’t played for a while so it’ll be a good test for them.’

Hosts United, meanwhile, have been boosted by the return of central defender Lisandro Martínez and Casemiro who both start on the substitutes bench versus Spurs.

‘Of course [it’s a boost] when you have quality players back,’ Erik ten Hag explained.

‘That is good for the team, for the quality of the team because at the end of the day the quality of the players makes the difference.’

Christian Eriksen starts in midfield for the Red Devils after recovering from an illness.

Asked what Eriksen brings to the team, Ten Hag replied: ‘Ah, he can give the pass. He’s a smart player.

He can make the difference. He scans passes and he can give them.

He has the ability and not many players have that.


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