AS Roma vs Tottenham Hotspur Preview: Pochettino to heavily rely on youth with star players still missing

AS Roma vs Tottenham Hotspur Preview: Pochettino to heavily rely on youth with star players still missing

Tottenham begin their pre-season tour of the USA against AS Roma who are likely to field a much stronger side than the Londoners.

Brogan Clasper

Tottenham Hotspur will kick-start their pre-season with their first major game against AS Roma in San Diego

However, Mauricio Pochettino will be without the majority of his star players who have just begun their holidays following their extended World Cup campaign. 

Meanwhile, Roma boasts a much stronger squad with the inclusion of their new signings - including Justin Kluivert and Javier Pastore

The game will kick-off at 3:05 am (BST) on Thursday morning.  

Depleted squad

Spurs captain, Hugo Lloris led his national side to World Cup glory in their 4-2 victory over Croatia

The Frenchman is just one of 10 key players which are not included in the International Champions Cup tour of the USA. 

The Lilywhites will also be without the World Cup's top scorer in Harry Kane. The England captain scored an impressive six goals throughout the tournament on his way to winning the Golden Boot. 

Kane is one of the five English representatives from Spurs who will miss the tour with Dele Alli, Kieran Trippier, Eric Dier and Danny Rose also out. 

Tottenham's three Belgian's Jan Vertonghen, Mousa Dembele and Toby Alderweireld will also not feature in the game against Roma following their third-placed finish in the World Cup.

In addition, Argentine defender Juan Foyth will miss the beginning of the season following a thigh injury picked up against Brentford on Saturday. 

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'Massive opportunity' for young players

With a large number of key players missing, the tour will provide fringe players such as Erik Lamela and Lucas Moura a huge opportunity to impress ahead of the new season.

Mauricio Pochettino is also eager to see how the young players cope against heavyweight opposition.

"It's a massive opportunity for our younger players to show their quality and for players to show they are in condition to fight for a place in the first team," Pochettino told Spurs TV.

"We're looking forward to playing, looking forward to a nice tour and sharing (time) with our fans, that's important too.

"We have three very good tests and more than results, it's about how we are going to approach the games and both collective and individual performances," the 46-year-old added. 

Roma fielding a strong outfit

The Giallorossi are likely to field a stronger side than Spurs with a more recognisable squad to choose from. 

Despite losing their number one goalkeeper in Alisson Becker to Liverpool last week, Roma have new recruits Kluivert, Davide Santon, Ante Coric, Bryan Cristante and Pastore to strengthen their squad. 

Roma finished third in last season's Serie A campaign and managed to reach the Champions League semi-finals before being knocked out by Liverpool.  

The two sides met in last year's competition where Roma ran out 3-2 victors as Marco Tumminello's last-minute strike won the Italians the points in New Jersey


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