Emmanuel Adebayor is back from his compassionate leave and is training with Tottenham Hotspur's first team again, but head coach Mauricio Pochettino says that he is not ready to play in Wednesday's league cup quarterfinal match against Newcastle.
"He was back [Monday]," said Pochettino in recent press conference comments, "but play tomorrow? No. He began training after one week yesterday so it would be impossible for him to be ready tomorrow."
For Spurs, Adebayor's absence likely means another start for Roberto Soldado, unless Pochettino feels that Harry Kane is able to cope with another two-match week. It's not clear whether Adebayor will be in contention for Saturday's home tie against Burnley, but with the matches coming fast and thick in the holiday season, Ade will most certainly be needed in the next few weeks.
A win over the Barcodes puts Spurs through to the Capital One Cup semifinals. While the league cup is the less prestigious of the two English domestic cups, silverware is still silverware, and it wouldn't be surprising to see both clubs put out strong, if slightly rotated, sides. Pochettino indicated that there may be some rotation Wednesday as Spurs try and balance cup and league competitions.
"At Tottenham it is not about names, it's about the squad. We have a strong squad. I have confidence in all players. For tomorrow, the players we will play is the best starting 11 to try to go to the semi-final.
"It's important for the club and important for us and our supporters. It's a big game and a very good opportunity to go to a semi-final. We need to create a good platform.
"Newcastle are a very good team. We need to create a nice and great atmosphere to go to the semi-final."
Newcastle has been a streaky team thus far this season. After starting the season 0-4-3 in the league and with manager Alan Pardew looking like he was likely to be fired, Toon fired off five consecutive league wins and also snapped Chelsea's dream of an undefeated season. Newcastle are currently eighth in the table, one point behind Spurs, and it's likely that they are taking the Capital One Cup at least as seriously as Tottenham are.