Opinion: Richarlison’s best position for Spurs and how Conte can unlock him

(Photo by Rob Newell – CameraSport via Getty Images)

Understanding Richarlison’s best attributes and what he can bring to the table:

When we signed Richarlison from Everton in the summer, I was very intrigued to see where he would fit into the squad and what plan Conte had for him.

Since then, he has had multiple injuries and when he has been fit, he hasn’t been able to hold down a consistent starting spot. Now at full fitness and coming off the back of a successful World Cup, he will be desperate for a run in the team to prove what he can do.

I believe his best position is playing centrally as a striker or in a false nine-type role, as I think his best attributes are his ability to hold off defenders, bringing others into play, and his movement in the box.

Playing in this position for Brazil in the World Cup he scored two beautiful goals and kept Gabriel Jesus out of the team, the latter currently leading the line for the front-runners of the premier league, who we shall not mention.

However, the problem Richarlison currently faces is that we have the best striker in the world at our club, denying him the opportunity to play in his favourite position. And when he does get onto the pitch is currently having to make the most of the limited minutes he is being given, and it’s so difficult to make an impact in this situation.

He has aggression to his game which we don’t possess in our current starting front three, and he can take the game to the opposition in a different, more challenging way.

It is my firm belief that he will play a crucial role in the remainder of our Champions League knock out campaign and the remainder of the Premier League season.

How best to deploy him:

The way I would utilise Richarlison would ensure that the Spurs team is less predictable for the opposition, as we would have two different ways of playing effectively. The alternative to the current set-up would involve playing Richarlison up top alongside Harry Kane using a 3-5-2 formation.

I believe that in the first half of the season we were not able to use this formation because our wingbacks simply were not creative enough. However, since signing Porro, I think this new formation could be introduced and it would present a real threat to the opposition.

If you look at how Conte used this formation at Inter Milan, Hakimi thrived and so did Lautaro Martinez, who has similar qualities to Richy. It would allow us to utilise both Richarlison and Kane and allow Richarlison to kickstart his career with Spurs.

With the quality of crossing by Perisic and Porro, the two forwards can thrive, particularly against teams who overload the midfield, and maintain a threat going forward.

I hope that, if Conte switches to this option at times during the season, this will allow us to finally start seeing the quality of play we know Richarlison is capable of.

Problems with other players due to this change and how to solve it:

If Richarlison is to be given a prominent role and the subsequent change in formation is successful, this will lead to both Kulusevski and Son being excluded, at least in their current roles. Apart from bringing them back in when we switch tactics, I can see Kulusevski as a talented third central midfielder in a three, who can play like an inverted winger, similar to the role Bernardo Silva has at Manchester City.

With Holjberg and Bentancur in behind, Conte can allow Kulu to drift and have the freedom whilst in possession, then moving to help Porro on the right side of midfield when we are defending.

Bentancur can play as the six on the half turn as his strength is in progressing the ball whilst Holjberg is the legs of the midfield in addition to his passing and ball-winning ability. Sonny, who has not had a great season, would get plenty of game time from the bench, with the chance of starting when we do revert back to the 3-4-3.

I think Spurs fans should be excited about the key role Richarlison can play in the current team. In addition to adapting the formation to suit his strengths, placing trust in him should allow him to achieve great things. The ceiling is high and I am anticipating that his career will explode with us, given his potential for hard work.

It is clear that he will give his all for the badge, which is all the supporters can ask. Mix that with his undoubted talent and you have a very dangerous player!

If we are going to go deep into the Champions League this season Richy will be key. I need to see that Pigeon back at the Lane ASAP.

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