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Adebayor could captain Spurs again - and Pochettino hopes boo boys will support him

15:00 23 January 2015

Emmanuel Adebayor

Emmanuel Adebayor

EMPICS Sport

Mauricio Pochettino says Emmanuel Adebayor could captain Tottenham again tomorrow – and he hopes the supporters will stop booing the striker and get behind him.

While Younes Kaboul is the club captain, Hugo Lloris and Adebayor are the vice-captains – and Kaboul has been struggling to get into the line-up.

Lloris has consequently been skippering the side in the majority of matches recently but, when he was rested in Wednesday’s Capital One Cup semi-final against Sheffield United, Adebayor wore the armband.

That angered a number of Spurs fans, given that the forward was making his first start since the home defeat against Stoke on November 9, when he criticised their lack of support – and the returning 30-year-old has been booed in his two appearances this week.

Asked whether Adebayor might play and captain the side again in tomorrow’s FA Cup fourh-round tie against Leicester City at White Hart Lane, Pochettino said: “It depends on my decision when I select the players.

“If Kaboul or Lloris are on the pitch, it’s not possible because Younes Kaboul is the captain.”

Asked if it would be better for the team if Adebayor wasn’t subjected to boos from Tottenham fans, the head coach replied: “I think this is the best because all players need to feel the support from the stands from our supporters.

“I think it’s better for him and for the team. We always need to create a great atmosphere to try to get success.”

Pochettino reports that he has a fully-fit squad to choose from, with Erik Lamela returning from injury – but Nacer Chadli is still away in Morocco after his father passed away earlier this week, and Nabil Bentaleb is at the African Cup of Nations with Algeria.

“I am happy that all players are available to be selected,” said the head coach. “Only Nacer Chadli is still away. Maybe Monday he is here and starts training with us.”

With this FA Cup tie coming in between the two legs of the Capital One Cup semi-final against Sheffield United – the return leg is on Wednesday – Pochettino is likely to rotate his squad.

“Maybe [there will be changes],” he said. “We analyse a lot of things from our players and the games and maybe it’s a moment to rotate some players, but I still haven’t decided which players.

“Maybe there won’t be a lot [of changes] for this game but we need to keep fighting in the four competitions. You can see that we have ahead a very busy period, a lot of games.

“Tomorrow will be the 37th official game - that’s nearly one season - and so we need to keep all of our players in a good condition to fight in the four competitions.”

Spurs narrowly edged past the Premier League’s basement boys Leicester 2-1 in the Midlands on Boxing Day, and Pochettino said: “We always expect tough games and it’s another Premier League team.

“Leicester have good players and for us it was difficult against them [at Christmas]. It’s an important competition for us and we expect a very tough game again.

“Am I surprised that they’ve been struggling in the league? No not surprised, because all the teams in the Premier League have quality and good players. It’s the toughest competition in the world.

“We need to be focused on the game and we need to be ready. It’s a good game to show character and to try to get the victory because it’s important to go through to the next round in the FA Cup.”

Follow me on Twitter @BenPearceSpurs

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