Tottenham Hotspur are facing a midfield issue as Mousa Dembele has been ruled out until the new year with ankle ligament damage.
The 31-year-old was injured in Spurs 3-2 win over Wolves at the weekend but the club have now confirmed he will miss an extended period of time, which could run all the way up to 2019.
That is a run of 12 Premier League games that Dembele could miss as well as Tottenham’s remaining Champions League group stage ties, but this could be a blessing in disguise for Mauricio Pochettino’s men and one player in particular.
A man who has just received an England call-up is Spurs central midfielder Harry Winks. The 22-year-old is emerging as Tottenham’s midfield general and is now guaranteed a place in Spurs’ starting XI.
He ran the show alongside Mousa Dembele v Wolves and is now seen as the number one deep-lying midfielder in a 4-2-3-1 system, alongside either Christian Eriksen, Mousa Sissoko or Victor Wanyama.
This is also promising news for Gareth Southgate, who has put his trust in the Spurs midfield man.
Winks could well be England’s creative midfield force, playing in the three behind Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane. As a well-balanced midfielder, Winks excels in every aspect of the game.
His ability to control the game is apparent for all to see and it is now just a matter of Winks getting first-team action in the Premier League.
This injury may be on the surface bad news for Spurs, but if it allows Winks to excel and aids his development as a footballer, that can only be a good thing for Tottenham and England.