Mauricio Pochettino asks Tottenham players to step up in Harry Kane’s absence
BOURNEMOUTH — Mauricio Pochettino called on his Tottenham squad to step up after Harry Kane suffered an ankle injury in Sunday’s 4-1 win at Bournemouth.
Kane is facing a spell on the sidelines after turning his ankle in a first-half collision with Asmir Begovic, as his goal was ruled out for offside with Spurs trailing 1-0 to Junior Stanislas’ precise opener.
Kane was able to walk around the pitch to the dugout, where he conversed with Spurs’ medical staff before being replaced by Erik Lamela.
Dele Alli soon equalised and Son Heung-Min, who moved up-front, scored twice in the second half before Serge Aurier’s first goal for the club added gloss to a victory which Spurs moved above Liverpool and into third place.
Pochettino said Kane, who left the Vitality Stadium in crutches and wearing a protective boot, would have a scan on Monday and insisted the striker was “positive,” even though the injury is to the same ankle that kept him sidelined for two months in 2016.
And the Spurs manager said: “We played fantastic football. Sonny was great in scoring twice, Dele, Lamela had good performances. But for me the whole team and the whole squad too.
“Football is about the whole squad and today with different players our performance was fantastic. If you want to be competitive and you want to arrive to the end of the season with some possibility to win something or achieve all the targets you have, you need a big squad. You need 24 or 25 players with the same objective — to fight for the team and help the team when the gaffer calls on them.”
Son made it seven goals in two weeks with another brace after his midweek goal in the Champions League defeat to Juventus and doubles against Rochdale and Huddersfield in the FA Cup and league respectively.
If Kane is sidelined for a fortnight or more, Son is likely to lead the line in next week’s FA Cup quarterfinal at Swansea and when Spurs return to Premier League action at Chelsea on April 1.
“He was happy for the victory and then when you score it’s a massive moment for the players. For him it’s special because he’s not a player who scores a lot of goals during the season,” Pochettino said of the in-form South Korea international.
“It will be strange because we come from Champions League, Premier League and then FA Cup. But I think it is good news because, for us, that we don’t play Premier League at the weekend because we’re still in the FA Cup, we are still alive in a different competition.”
Pochettino confirmed that Danny Rose was replaced with “fatigue and a knock” but said the left-back, who was at fault for Bournemouth’s goal with Aurier, was not injured, while he said Alli was also fatigued and would be monitored during the week.
The Spurs manager had sympathy with Bournemouth after Callum Wilson’s equalising goal at 2-1 was ruled out for a push on Davinson Sanchez.
“It was so difficult for me to see from my position, you need to trust the referee, sometimes it is for you and sometimes against you,” he said.
“Look, in football you need always some luck because the decision should be different, maybe now we are talking in a different way, but that is football, it happened Wednesday [against Juventus], happened the week before, but I accept football is like this.
“I think Bournemouth is a very good team, I think Eddie [Howe] is doing a great job, they have a very good squad, very good players and they are in a position today that they are safe, of course a lot of work to do but I think they are a very good team and showed great quality today.”
Dan is ESPN FC’s Tottenham correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @Dan_KP.