Soldado has been under extreme pressure as of late. After a rather speculative goal drought recently he has been the target of strong criticism, prior to mistakes that were made by the striker in the Europa League against FC Dnipro away. Despite this, if further inspection is taken, you will realise that when he missed the supposed ‘sitter’, the ball actually bounced off of Soldado’s knee and flew out of play after a bobble on the turf. During the past week he has been linked with a swap move with Atletico Madrid for hit-man Diego Costa. In my opinion, this would not be the best of deals and would be unfair on Soldado. After scoring 80 goals in 3 seasons with Valencia, it is clear that his spirit and efforts in training will pay off, and to tease Atletico with a move will only affect the striker’s morale.
During the match versus Cardiff City, Soldado bagged the only goal. He scored with a slick movement inside the box and a trademark Soldado strike neatly prodded the ball into the corner. Manager Tim Sherwood claimed that Spurs “won ugly” and the performance wasn’t great overall. On the other hand, it was obvious due to his celebration after scoring that Soldado was overwhelmed. Instead of celebrating he just clutched his temple in relief. Also something to mention would be that despite not scoring against Dnipro in our 3-1 win to send us through, Soldado did have a goal disallowed due to being offside. His finish and movement was sublime.
When a fan watches football, for obvious reasons, their eyes remain fixed on the ball. But if the centre of attention was suddenly turned to players without possession, you will realise that Soldado’s movement around the pitch is second to none. When he spots a run, he instantly makes it his task to meet the pass and get in space to receive the ball. He has the classic striker instinct. It is questionable whether or not he is receiving the right through balls to suit his play by the supporting players. For example Eriksen is already a very hands-on player who isn’t afraid to take chances. He has his own style of play, however if he ever feeds the ball through, it would be mainly to Emmanuel Adebayor. It is clear also that Adebayor is the favourite in the pecking order above Soldado.
Overall, is this fair on Roberto Soldado? Personally, I believe he deserves a break and that some of the Tottenham fan-base are not getting behind him enough. A striker out of form needs one key element over the rest. Support. Upwards on onwards for the Spurs!
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