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Spurs v Palace - Mauricio's press conference

18 August 2016|Tottenham Hotspur

We take a look at some of the things Mauricio Pochettino had to say during today’s (Thursday, August 18) press conference ahead of our first home game of the new season against Crystal Palace on Saturday.

How will you cope with the loss of your captain, Hugo Lloris, through injury?
Mauricio Pochettino: "It's always difficult when your captain is not on the pitch but we trust in Michel (Vorm) – he's done well during pre-season. He was, from day one, our first option keeper during the summer. He played a lot of friendly games and I think he's ready to compete. He's a keeper that has a lot of experience in the Premier League and in internationals and there is no doubt about his quality."

Is there any link to Hugo's injury and the fact that he was playing so late into the summer with the Euros?
Mauricio: "No, if you remember it was an action that is not normal for the keeper, to leave his position and run a lot. It was an accident that sometimes happens in football. It is nothing related to the Euros. It's only an accident but the good thing is that it's only a minor injury – he'll be back with the team very soon."

Harry Kane has had a busy schedule over the last couple of years. How do you assess his fitness?
Mauricio: "He's okay, he's good. It's always difficult at the start of the season – we try to care for him a lot like the other players, like Dele Alli who is very young and played a lot of games last season. It's very important to understand that they are not machines, they are human, they need to train hard and they need to rest. It's not easy because the competition today in football in the Premier League and in Europe demands a lot of energy – not only physically but mentally. We try to be clever in the way that we manage them."

Is there a part of you that's excited about linking Vincent Janssen up with Harry Kane at some point?
Mauricio: "That is one possibility because Vincent can link up very well with Harry Kane. It's an option to play with two strikers in some games. I think he had a very good impact in the game against Everton. When a new player arrives, his motivation is always at 200 per cent and it's important now to keep that motivation and hunger that he showed against Everton. He's adapting his style to our philosophy in a different league and we are very happy with how he behaved, like Victor Wanyama. They fit very well with the team."

Do you sense a vulnerability about Palace after their results in the second half of last season and their loss to West Brom last week?
Mauricio: "No, it's a different season. We know how they play – it will be very difficult to beat them but in the Premier League all games are very tough. It's a different season and we'll see what happens but in our minds we want to get our first victory of the season in front of our supporters."

Is Heung-Min Son available for Saturday after his efforts at the Olympics?
Mauricio: "Son is available. He arrived a little bit sad after his elimination from the quarter-final but we'll see. We need to assess him tomorrow and we'll see if he's in the squad or not."