I like many Spurs fans hate being negative about our beloved club, but when we see performances like the one from the team on Sunday, it’s quite hard not to be. However, after a long reflection period (that’s why the article has taken so long to write) I can now see that this sort of defeat was coming, and why I honestly believe it could be the best thing to happen to us all season. Therefore here are a few points the game has taught us:
Sandro must start Premier League games
Many Pundits have labeled our midfield as one of the best in the league and I can’t really argue when you have players like Paulinho, Eriksen and Dembele in it. However, when you properly analyse the wonder goal that Ravel Morrison scored against us you have to wonder where our midfield went. Diame shrugged off Dembele with ease and once he gave the ball to Morrison he was left alone on the half way line with no midfield player to even make a challenge. In my opinion, at the half way point last season Sandro was our player of the season, and that’s because of the role he plays and how effective he plays it. He may be of Brazilian nationality but he doesn’t have that Brazilian flair, he sits deep protecting our sometimes leaky back four and isn’t afraid to put his body on the line to win the ball and if he does then he always looks for the forward pass to start a new attack. I believe that if he was on the pitch at the time of the goal then he would have sat deep and would have tried his hardest to make sure that Morrison hadn’t progressed further than the center circle. And this is a problem that will continue to haunt us throughout the season. The only problem with including Sandro is that we have to lose one of those star performers, and the one who loses their place is unfortunately Sigurdsson. I understand that he is the one who is scoring goals for us but I feel that he looks awkward on the left wing as dribbling is not his forte and he always seems to make the left wing that little bit more narrow. So with Sandro in the centre defensive role with the roaming Paulinho to his side I would use Dembele to cover the position left by Sigurdsson. It’s not his natural position but he has all the qualities to cover that position more effectively than Sigurdsson, he’s a much better dribbler and would probably fill the physical hole which Bale left when he vacated the position. It would also help Dembele’s game because you would hope that playing in that more advanced role it would add the much needed goals to his game which it misses.
Soldado fits the system we play much better than Defoe
A lot of people in the press were calling for Jermain Defoe to start in the lone striker role, when Soldado has done no wrong. I believe it was pressure that made AVB start Defoe on Sunday, because after playing all 90 minutes of a mid-week game in Russia, I wouldn’t say he was in the best physical state to rack up the goals a hard working defense. Soldado may not be scoring the goals at the moment however he is still relatively new to the English game and games against physical teams like West Ham can only help him learn. The guy needs confidence and will only gain confidence when he is scoring goals and if he’s not getting the minutes on the pitch he will never get the goals. And whilst he hasn’t been scoring goals at the moment, he has still been working hard for the team, he holds the ball much better than Defoe and is very good at bringing Eriksen into the game, therefore if I was to play a solo striker Soldado would get the nod over Defoe all the time.
The players need to understand what each game means for the fans
The team is relatively new and I’m still under the illusion that the team hasn’t fully gelled. I’m also one of those really worried fans when it comes to match day, I’d worry about a match against a team who are bottom of the pub league. So when I see quotes from Dembele saying we need to win the games against “small teams”, it doesn’t feel you with the most confidence. I don’t know if the quotes have been taken out of context but a game in front of the home fans against probably our biggest rivals only second to Arsenal, isn’t exactly a game against a small team. Most of the players have only been at the club for a couple of seasons but the experienced players like Dawson and genuine fans like Townsends need to remind these players that at this club there is no such thing as a small game, because when you are aiming for big things every game must be treated like a cup final. No slip ups.
And finally, we’re only 3 points off top
It’s true we are only 3 points off the summit of the table. So if this game actually teaches the newer players and other experienced players who didn’t do themselves justice, that no game can be taken for granted, there’s no reason why we still cant aim for the bigger things. I’m under no illusion that we will not drop another point all season, because we will, but so will other clubs so if we can win the games which we really should and maybe get a few iconic wins against teams around us we can really go onto the next level. However, it all depends on how the players react to this defeat on Sunday that really wasn’t acceptable.
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