Toby Alderweireld has reached something of a crossroads in his Tottenham Hotspur career.
Firmly established as the best defender in England across the previous two years, a seemingly innocuous hamstring injury sustained in Spurs’ Champions League group stage clash with Real Madrid put the Belgium international on the treatment table. Since that fresh November night, Alderweireld has not played once in the Premier League.
Alderweireld is the kind of player who simply loves to play every game. He declared himself fit for the north London derby with Arsenal in February, having played 90 minutes in an FA Cup tie against Newport County. But Mauricio Pochettino omitted him from the squad altogether against the Gunners, and then refused to allow Alderweireld to travel to Turin for the first leg of the Champions League last-16 tie against Juventus.