Assou-Ekotto injury blow

Modric may be handed right-flank berth

Assou-Ekotto: groin injury

Tottenham full-back Benoit Assou-Ekotto is set to miss most of January after suffering a groin strain.

Assou-Ekotto, 25, has withdrawn from Cameroon's African Nations Cup squad and will have an injection next week, but it is understood he will not require an operation.

England winger Aaron Lennon has already been ruled out for a fortnight with a similar problem.

"Benoit is having an an injection on Monday," manager Harry Redknapp said. "And he will be out for a few weeks.

"He has been terrific. Two terrific players, him and Lennon, have both picked up groin strains. It's a big blow to us. They are two outstanding players."

Gareth Bale is set to deputise for Assou-Ekotto at left-back but Redknapp has still not decided how to replace Lennon on the right flank.

David Bentley is an obvious choice but Luka Modric has returned from a fractured fibula, while Niko Kranjcar's form has impressed.

Redknapp added: "I could play Krancjar and Modric wide. Modric could play on the right just as easily as on the left. The two Croatian boys are fantastic technicians and great footballers."