The big talking points ahead of Tottenham and Bayer Leverkusen's Champions League clash


Tottenham take on Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday in a crunch Champions League clash in Group E - the winner would find themselves a lot closer to qualifying for the next round; the loser would be left with much to do.

Here, we take a look at five talking points ahead of the match in Germany.

Chance to take charge

Tottenham's Harry Winks takes on CSKA Moscow during the Champions League - (Ivan Sekretarev/AP)

Tottenham are relative rookies in the Champions League compared to Leverkusen, who are making their 10th appearance in the tournament, and their fourth in the last six years.

This fixture, however, appears the most intriguing in the group, with Bayer unbeaten but failing to win either of their first two games, while Spurs succumbed to Monaco before beating CSKA Moscow.

It means the German side know they can leapfrog Tottenham with victory on Tuesday in what appears a pivotal game in the race for qualification.

Alderweireld absense

Tottenham's Toby Alderweireld receives medical attention - (Dave Howarth/PA)

The sight of Toby Alderweireld being carried off on a stretcher during Saturday's draw with West Brom was arguably more concerning for Tottenham fans than the result.

The full extent of his injury is yet to be revealed but the Belgian will certainly play no part in Germany. That could mean a promotion for either the out-of-favour Kevin Wimmer or 18-year-old Cameron Carter-Vickers, but perhaps the most likely replacement is Eric Dier.

Dier has struggled for form so far this season and it remains to be seen how he would react to a change of role.

Son back against his former club

Tottenham's Son Heung-min celebrates with Erik Lamela - (Pavel Golovkin/AP)

Son Heung-min's heart may be beating a little faster than those of his team-mates when he walks out at the BayArena, given he spent two years at Leverkusen before joining Spurs for £22 million in August 2015.

Son was prolific, scoring 21 goals in 62 league appearances for his former club, but his focus drifted once Tottenham's interest became clear and he left under a cloud.

It will be interesting to see the reception Son receives from the home support, particularly if he continues a recent goal flurry that has included five goals in seven games.

Hernandez to prove a point

Bayer Leverkusen's Javier Hernandez - (Martin Meissner/AP)

Javier Hernandez was never given much of a chance at Manchester United, where he made more league appearances off the bench than from the starting line up; however, after another disjointed year on loan at Real Madrid, he appears finally to have found a home at Leverkusen.

Hernandez hit 26 goals in 43 appearances last season and already has seven in nine this term, despite a nasty hand injury in August. The 28-year-old may be keen to prove his worth against English opposition.

Clash of styles

Bayer Leverkusen manager Roger Schmidt and Lars Bender - (Martin Meissner/AP)

Roger Schmidt has joined the growing list of subscribers to the pressing style that Mauricio Pochettino has implemented to impressive effect at White Hart Lane.

Schmidt is equally demanding of his players at Leverkusen, where winning the ball high up the pitch and chasing in packs is paramount. They were too strong for Borussia Dortmund earlier this month, when they won 2-0, a day before Spurs dismantled Manchester City in similar fashion.

An exhausting contest awaits.