Player In Focus: Jan Vertonghen; a day to forget for the Belgian

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Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

Unfortunately, today’s In Focus segment will not be a positive one, as we break down exactly where it went wrong for Jan Vertoghen today.

I am a firm believer that Mauricio Pochettino must take some responsibility for the Belgian’s performance today.

Vertonghen was out injured for 10 games, a pretty long time in football terms. To throw him in for 90 minutes in a must-win Champions League game was one thing, but today was a step too far.

Asking him to play 180 minutes in only four days was just too much to ask of someone just back from injury, and Vertonghen took it into his own hands to ensure he didn’t complete that time.

The horror show started in the 8th minute, when Vertonghen threw his arm up above his head and flicked the ball away from a corner, a strange mistake for someone so experienced.

Aubameyang scored the resulting penalty to get Arsenal off on the front foot.

The Belgium international never looked quite comfortable on the pitch today, as he was sloppy on the ball, and found it near impossible to keep up with the pace of Aubamayeng.

Spurs ran away to a 2-1 lead at half time, before Jan and Foyth left gaps in the second 45, allowing Auba to finish well, followed by Torreira and Lacazette.

To round off his defensively poor performance, Vertonghen added to the yellow he got from the first half pen with a late follow through on Laca.

The red card will keep him out of the next game for Spurs, but perhaps he needs this time to take a breather and to reflect on his mistakes.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. I feel Vertonghen should have been rested. we did need some fresh legs in midfield in the second half.
    However, Arsenal basically stood in spaces receiving passes. We allowed them to many
    free passes. Their last two goals should never have happened. Son should have put us 3-2 up
    when he chose to shoot from outside the box where he had 10 yds. to advance before shooting.
    In all, Spurs are still in a good place.
    We should still qualify for Champions League.

  2. I don’t think that Vertonghen’s second foul should have been another yellow.
    if you look closely you will see Vertonghen cleared the ball long before Lacazette arrived.
    it was he who raced across late and caught Vertonghen’s boot that had already cleared the ball.
    I think he the ref got that one all wrong.

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