Defensive woes stack up for Sherwood

20 March 2014 06:23:58 EST

Tottenham Hotspur have a major defensive problem for their Europa League clash with Benfica in the Estadio da Luz on Thursday evening.

Centre-backs Vlad Chiriches and Michael Dawson remain sidelined by injury, while Jan Vertonghen is suspended after being booked in the last-16 first leg at White Hart Lane.

We have to be very careful with Tottenham.

Jorge Jesus

And now Younes Kaboul has been ruled out by a knock, with head coach Tim Sherwood protecting the France international for the Premier League clash with Southampton at the weekend.

Sherwood has named an inexperienced squad for the trip to Portugal, with Erik Lamela, Etienne Capoue, Mousa Dembele, Emmanuel Adebayor and Paulinho.

France international goalkeeper Hugo Lloris has also remained behind in London, with veteran Brad Friedel set to start in goal.

Spurs trail 3-1 from the first leg in north London and are 1/1 to be beaten again in Lisbon, with the draw 1/1, while Benfica can be backed at 1/1 to win by a 3-0 margin.

Meanwhile, Benfica coach Jorge Jesus has warned his side not to take things easy against an under-strength Spurs outfit, saying: "We won there but we are not qualified yet.

"They have lots of quality players that can do the same here that we did in London. We have to be very careful with Tottenham."

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