Oh no! Tottenham set to lose influential trio in January as latest Ange Postecoglou blow emerges

Tottenham could be set for a nightmare January as trio leave for Asia Cup and AFCON.

Son Heung-min is heading off to the Asia Cup which starts on January 12 to February 10, while Yves Bissouma and Pape Sarr will be at the Africa Cup of Nations in what has emerged as the latest headache for manager Ange Postecoglou.

Son returned to form over the weekend with a goal and two assists to help Spurs to a 4-1 win over Newcastle United, ending a run of five games without a win. Only Mohamed Salah and Erling Haaland have scored more league goals than the South Korean.

Tottenham are also bracing themselves for the loss of influential midfield duo Bissouma and Sarr scheduled to be away from the AFCON which starts on January 13 to February 11. If Mali, Senegal and South Korea go deep in the AFCON and the Asia Cup, Bissouma, Sarr and Son are set to miss the FA Cup third and fourth rounds on the weekends of January 6-7 and 27-28, respectively, as well as league games against Manchester United, Brentford, Everton and Brighton.

Clubs release players two weeks before major tournaments according to FIFA rules. The absence of Bissouma and Sarr adds to that of Rodrigo Bentancur and James Maddison, both sidelined due to injuries, leaving manager Postecoglou restricted to Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Oliver Skipp and Giovani Lo Celso.

January is likely to be the litmus test for Postecoglou who admitted losing players wasn’t ideal. He told reporters after their win at the weekend: “In this league, if you have one or two key players out, you’re going to struggle.

“You mentioned James and Micky but you missed out on Bentancur, how important Perisic was and when we won those games late, he was the one providing and Manor Solomon. I could go on and on. It sounds like excuses but that is the reality of the Premier League and you don’t need too much analysis to see why in the last few weeks we haven’t been as conclusive in our results as we were earlier in the year.”

Tottenham will travel to Nottingham Foreston Friday night looking to pile more misery on Steve Cooper’s team who could only manage a draw at Wolverhampton Wanderers last weekend.