Radu Dragusin set to make first Tottenham start against Fulham

Tottenham head coach Ange Postecoglou has backed Radu Dragusin to grasp his opportunity with the January recruit primed to make his full debut at Fulham on Saturday.

Micky Van de Ven has been ruled out of the London derby with a minor hamstring injury, which is only set to sideline the Dutch defender until after the international break.

Van de Ven’s absence will hand Dragusin a first start since his move from Genoa in a transfer that could rise to £25million.

“I’ll take the suspense out of it. He’ll start tomorrow,” Postecoglou revealed.

“It’s a good opportunity for him. We obviously brought him in with a view that it was evident we were very short in that area and he’d had a very good half-season in Italy.

“He’s had to be patient and I said to him when we signed him I couldn’t tell him when he’d get an opportunity but he would get an opportunity.

“I thought he did well when he came on the other day (against Aston Villa). It was good that the team was already in a good rhythm but the scoreline was still 0-0.

“He contributed to how we finished the game. He’s a pretty assured young guy. He has belief in himself, he has really good people around him.

Richarlison could return from injury (Zac Goodwin/PA)
Richarlison could return from injury (Zac Goodwin/PA)

“More than anything that half-an-hour at least gives him that game-time he needs at the level.

“He was exposed to a very good team and some very good opposition players. I think that will help him tomorrow, particularly at the beginning of the game.”

While Spurs will be without centre-back Van de Ven at Craven Cottage, Richarlison could return after a knee injury.

The prognosis for Manor Solomon is not positive, with the former Fulham loanee no closer to being fit again.

Postecoglou said: “Yeah, no real progress. He’s still in that position of not being really comfortable where he’s at.

“So, we’ll give him the time he needs to be in the palace where he can recover. The medical team is looking at some other strategies now.

“Micky, nothing too significant. He’ll miss tomorrow, but we’re quite confident if the recovery goes well with the international break, he shouldn’t miss too much more.

“I think he came off at the right time to be honest, so while he misses tomorrow, it’s still positive.

“Richy, he trained today so we’ll just see how he pulls up. If he pulls up OK, he’ll probably be available.”

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