Tottenham Hotspur took to the pitch today for the first time this pre-season, taking on Team K League, an all-star squad from the 12 South Korean top-flight clubs.
Let’s take a look at how the first-half XI got on (1-1):
Brandon Austin – 6 – Didn’t have much of a kick or a save to make, beyond one punch away, but always nice to see an academy player given a chance, particularly between the sticks.
Emerson Royal – 7.5 – Advanced really well down the right-wing and put in some great crosses. Should have scored but scuffed wide. Also noticed him coming central with his attacking runs a lot when Bryan Gil was on the wing – very interesting to see.
Cristian Romero – 7 – So calm on the ball, including one backheel to get out of trouble. And the few times things do get past him, he uses his strength to stop the attack in its tracks.
Eric Dier – 8 – Not only was he assured on the ball and with his defending, but he also ripped one into the top corner with his weak foot after a great run. Lost his man for the K League goal though.
Davinson Sanchez – 6 – Looked a little suspect on his weak side, covering at left-centre-back. Lucky not to give away a penalty and put in a couple of other rash challenges. But, it is a pre-season game after all.
Ryan Sessegnon – 7.5 – Full of boundless energy down the left, often staying very wide with chalk on his boots and attacking the outside. Classic Conte wing-back play, with lots of crosses and getting into the box.
Rodrigo Bentancur – 8 – So calm and collected on the ball at all times, and always without looking as though he’s even breaking a sweat. Nice tidy performance recycling the ball from defence to attack.
Oliver Skipp – 8 – It was hard to believe that this was Skipp’s first game in so many months. He was combative off the ball and creative on it. It was like he’s never been away.
Lucas Moura – 7.5 – Such an important squad player. In open games like this, Lucas’ footwork is mesmerising to watch at times, and created so much space for Tottenham – albeit without the end product. Conte has great depth to choose from up front these days.
Bryan Gil – 7.5 – In terms of work rate, Gil was head and shoulders above anyone on the pitch. He reminds me of Erik Lamela with his unrelenting press and energy. On the ball, he looked dangerous, although he can tunnel-vision at times.
Richarlison – 7.5 – Considering he has only just joined, his link-up play with the other forwards was great. Once that final pass or shot is added later in pre-season, he will be a great addition to the front line.
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