Team news is in ahead of Thursday’s Europa League tie with Benfica and it shows two important players returning to the squad. Christian Eriksen and Danny Rose are both back to full fitness and are in contention for a starting slot.

“Danny has trained for two or three days now,” said Tim Sherwood. “We’ve got him back quickly after he went off against Norwich and he’s not lost that much training.

“It’s good to have Christian back, we’ve all seen how he can affect football matches, so we hope he can do the same again, if selected,” added the coach.

This is a tricky one to call with a number or injuries reducing Sherwood’s options. Etienne Capoue, Erik Lamela and Vlad Chriches are all out while there is a doubt over Moussa Dembele so does Sherwood leave players in reserve ahead of the North London Derby or play the strongest possible side in the hope of landing a trophy?

Andros Townsend, Harry Kane, Aaron Lennon, Nabil Bentaleb and Nacer Chadli will be among those pushing for a start while the manager seems almost certain to play two up front at home.

It’s been impossible to second guess the selections under Tim Sherwood – here’s what we think for tonight but what’s your view?

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19 COMMENTS

  1. We need goals, yes, but we also need to have the ball from time to time. Just Ade up front for me. Eriksen behind. Sandro & Paulinho behind that. Lennon & Chadli flanking. Then whatever defence we can cobble together…

    • Lennon was our top assister last season. This season that ain’t happening. When Townsend started season, he got praise for his enthusiam and trickery but then you soon realise that if he does not score or assist, then what is he contributing. When Lennon is not scoring/assisting, then at least he contributes to the shape, balance of the team, he covers defense well and helps us retain the ball. We simply need to get him back to a state where he sets goals up again. In short, we have no one better on right anyway.

      • Lol I agree with Steve not tony rich Lennon is useless ,he gives balance because he stays out the way ,every time he plays it’s like playing with 10 men

  2. Lloris
    Walker Kaboul Verts Rose
    Lennon Sandro Paulhino Ericksen
    Soldado Adebayor

    Benteleb has looked very tired recently and Dembele needs a little rest ahead of Arsenal on Sunday, Townsend to get 30mins in the second half for Lennon- they will be competing for the starting spot on Sunday as both have been below standard for the past month.

  3. Lloris
    Naughton Kaboul Vertonghen Rose
    Sandro/Bentaleb
    Lennon Eriksen Townsend
    Ade Soldado

    If Sandro is still feeling the effects of injury play Bentaleb as I’d prefer to have Sandro available, with Paulinho, on Sunday

  4. 442 against benfica?? 4231 for me. We will get ripped apart with 442.

    ………………lloris…………..
    .walker..kaboul…verts…rose..

    ………..capoue…siggy……..

    ..Lennon…..eriksen…..chadli…
    ……………soldado…….

    Ade
    Dembele
    Sandro
    Bentalab all look like they need a rest

  5. I’m not sure Kaboul can play tonight and on Sunday.

    Not even sure what our priorities are?

    If he doesnt play tonight then Fryers at CB tonight.

  6. Lloris
    Naughton Vertonghen Fryers Rose
    Chadli Eriksen Bentaleb Siggurdson
    Kane
    Soldado
    Bench: Ade, Paulinho, Townsend, Lennon, Kaboul, Walker, Friedel

  7. Lloris
    Naughton, Kaboul, Vertonghen, Fryers
    Sandro, Paulinho
    Lennon, Eriksen, Townsend
    Soldado

    No Rose, bloody liability, never wants to run back having gone forward and has a touch of the BAE’s, thinks he’s better than he really is. No Walker, prob have to play Sunday but again proved last weekend that there is very little between the ears that can retain info from a season ago, ie Liverpool away and stupid pass backs.
    Worry about today and sort out Sunday tomorrow.

  8. I’m reading this lineup and it looks decent enough to give Benfica problems, but I don’t know if we can win this tie. We just can’t win at anywhere else in Europe, even with a supposedly superior squad. The game I am more worried about it Arsenal when they come to play. They look to be up for it, are we? Our only chance is if we turn Sunday’s game into a major scrap.

  9. I would bet on him starting Bentaleb, but I can’t work out why. I’m hoping one striker (Soldado) with Eriksen in behind and two legitimate wingers. How do we get to mid-March without a settled starting eleven?

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