Dier out until January, leaves Spurs light in midfield

(AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

LONDON (AP) Tottenham is facing a shortage of central-midfield options over the busy festive period after Eric Dier was ruled out until the new year after having surgery to remove his appendix.

Dier missed the 1-0 win over Burnley on Saturday after contacting Tottenham's medical staff with acute abdominal pain. The Premier League club said Sunday that the England international will "return to training with the squad in January."

Mousa Dembele and Victor Wanyama are currently out with injuries, leaving Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino with Harry Winks and Moussa Sissoko as his only senior out-and-out central midfielders. Oliver Skipp, 18, made his first senior start in that position against Burnley.

Tottenham has six games in 17 days across three competitions, starting with a north London derby against Arsenal in the quarterfinals of the English League Cup on Wednesday.

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Updated December 16, 2018