Journalist Paul Brown has suggested that Antonio Conte is continuing to play Emerson Royal at right wing-back as the Italian has not been convinced been either Matt Doherty or Djed Spence in training.
Doherty was in scintillating form after breaking into Tottenham’s starting eleven in the second half of last season but the Republic of Ireland international missed the last seven games of the campaign after injuring his knee in April (Transfermarkt).
When Spurs signed Djed Spence in the summer, it was expected that the 22-year-old would compete with Doherty with a place in the starting lineup this season, with Emerson Royal being linked with a move away from the club (Sky Sports).
However, it is the Brazilian who has started every single one of Tottenham’s seven games across all competitions so far this season (Transfermarkt).
Antonio Conte admitted last week that Doherty is continuing to recover from the ‘serious’ injury he picked up in April and revealed that the former Wolves man has made good progress over recent weeks (Football London).
Brown has now suggested that Spence and Doherty may not be doing well enough in training to push Emerson out of the team.
When asked about the right wing-back position, the journalist told GiveMeSport: “Conte clearly wants to rotate those positions, he always has done over the years, it’s been an area he regards in all of his teams.
“He likes to have two really good players in those positions that he can change without a drop off in quality, but he’s a ruthless manager and if you’re not doing it in training, you won’t get a look in.
“So, I can only imagine he doesn’t see enough at the moment from Doherty or Spence to put them in there.”
Spurs Web Opinion
I believe that Doherty would have started ahead of Emerson if he was 100 per cent. However, having said that, the Brazilian has had a decent start to the season.
The 23-year-old might have moved ahead of the Republic of Ireland international in Conte’s pecking order on the back of his performances over recent weeks.
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