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Be cautious with Harry Kane, Mauricio Pochettino urges England

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled “Be cautious with Harry Kane, Mauricio Pochettino urges England” was written by David Hytner at Wembley, for The Guardian on Sunday 5th November 2017 17.11 UTC

Mauricio Pochettino has urged Gareth Southgate to handle Harry Kane with care during the upcoming international break while the Tottenham Hotspur manager reported that Harry Winks was a doubt for England’s games against Germany and Brazil and Dele Alli has been ruled out of them.

Winks twisted his ankle in the 19th minute of Spurs’ 1-0 win against Crystal Palace at Wembley on Sunday and, although he played on after treatment, he did not appear for the second half. The 21-year-old will now be assessed by Tottenham and England medics.

Kane also needed treatment after a first-half tackle from Palace’s Tim Fosu-Mensah but he carried on and Pochettino said that there was no problem issue with him. Pochettino, though, withdrew him on 77 minutes as a precaution because he was mindful of how much football the striker had played in recent weeks.

In the previous international break, Kane completed the 90 minutes against both Slovenia and Lithuania and Pochettino would like Southgate, the England manager, to bear in mind Kane’s workload for what are only friendlies with Germany and Brazil.

Alli missed out on the Palace game because of a hamstring injury, which Pochettino said he had first felt last weekend at Manchester United. There is a confidence at Tottenham that Alli will be fit for the north London derby against Arsenal that follows the international break.

“It’s a difficult situation for everyone,” Pochettino said, when asked about Kane’s fitness and fatigue levels. “For us, we are focusing on our problems and our injuries but I also understand completely what the national team wants and needs. The most important thing is that the national teams, including England, understand the needs of our players and help them so they will be fit when they return here.

“All you can do is have good communication and explain the situation of everyone and then trust in them. I subbed him to protect him after Real Madrid last Wednesday. It was such an emotional game and it is better to avoid a risk.

“Winks twisted his ankle and, at the moment, it is extremely painful. We must assess him with our medical staff and that of the national team. He is so excited to make the national team and I am sure he wants to make it. But it is up to the medical people.

“Alli was feeling his tendon in the posterior muscle, close to the hamstring, after the United game. He then played 90 minutes against Real Madrid. It is a very small thing. We hope treatment will go well in the next two weeks and he will be fit to arrive against Arsenal.”

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