Tottenham Hotspur are not only a long way short of challenging for the title this season after five dropped points from three games, but they are also falling short of their own form last time out.
Spurs invested in Tanguy Ndombele and Giovani Lo Celso in the summer, with many expecting them to push on, but it has been anything but.
After a loss to Newcastle at the weekend and three poor performances in the Prem, we take a look at the five things that are missing from Spurs:
Centre-back pairing –
This is a simple fix for me. Although they are getting older, Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld are not only Spurs’ best pairing at the back, but they are one of the best duos in world football. For me, Sanchez is not cutting it as a first-team player and Pochettino is foolish to keep picking him over Jan.
In truth, Spurs never actually replaced Kyle Walker. When he left Spurs, he was one of the best right-backs in Europe and was a huge part of the Spurs wing-back identity. However, Pochettino merely decided to promote Trippier, and when he left, Kyle Walker-Peters. Not going out and spending on a right-back like Aaron Wan-Bissaka or Max Aarons has cost Spurs already this season.
There are too many underlying issues behind the scenes at the moment that must be resolved. Is Eriksen staying or leaving? Is there a replacement lined up? What is going on with Vertonghen? Is Pochettino on the way out? A few years ago, you could see that the Tottenham camp was one being, working as one towards the goal of the Premier League title, and they came close. Now they seem disjointed and unsettled, and they can’t move forward like that.
New Poch contract –
Daniel Levy needs to make a big statement in this tough time and the best way to do that for me is to tie Poch down to a big new deal. Promise him greater funds moving forward and get a five-year deal on the table for him to sign. If he leaves, Spurs are back to square one.
More investment –
Sure, Spurs bought four players in the transfer window, but I feel as if that has masked how much they have actually spent. If the likes of Wanyama or Aurier leave the club before the deadline, Spurs may have only actually invested £50m net this summer. In a season in which they needed to go out and spend big to replace Eriksen and Dembele, as well as bring in new stars to push the club forward, this is not enough for me. I wanted to see something in the region of £100m to £150m net being spent.
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