Mauricio Pochettino addresses questions over Tottenham man's poor form

Fernando Llorente has featured throughout the cup for Spurs

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has hailed his side's "professional" performance following Wednesday's 2-0 FA Cup replay win over Newport County.

"I think the FA need to assess how the pitch is and then to take a decision about if it's good for the FA Cup, good for the players, good for the teams to play in this type of pitch, in that condition that I think doesn't help football".

"I think you are going to struggle, no?"

"It's a big risk to play on a pitch like that - especially if the pictures I have seen give an accurate impression of the state of it. He had the chance to score but you know now we have 24 players and it will be tough to find a place in the starting XI for everyone".

"But not just because we are Tottenham". No, I think Rochdale can not play football there too.

"For the opponent too, it's about providing a safe place to play for the players".

Tottenham got past Wimbledon - who are 19th in the third-tier League One - in the third round, while Rochdale are second from bottom in that division.

Meanwhile Newport manager Michael Flynn, who has signed a contract extension until 2020, apologised to Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino for a dossier that said Spurs star Dele Alli didn't work hard enough in possession.

The FA have confirmed they want to game to go ahead at the home of the League One strugglers, feeling Dale have earned the right to take on the Premier League giants at Spotland.

However, rain is forecast in east Lancashire every day next week.

Speaking shortly after his side's 2-0 victory over Michael Flynn's side, Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino insisted that Llorente's struggle to find the back of the net does not worry him and that the former Spain global must continue to fight for his place in the starting XI just like everyone else.

Tottenham's fourth-round replay against Newport brought Lamela's fourth start of the season in all competitions, with two coming in the Premier League.

A real test of their ability at the venue will come this weekend, however, when their fiercest rivals, Arsenal, come to play on the hallowed turf at Wembley.

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