Owen Hargreaves has heaped praise on Tottenham’s set-piece coach Gianni Vio for the impact he has had since arriving at the club.
Vio joined Antonio Conte’s staff as Spurs’ set-piece coach in the summer and the Lilywhites have certainly looked a lot more threatening in dead-ball situations this season.
According to reports, Vio has created 4,830 set-piece unique routines (The Sun), and the likes of Harry Kane (Football.London) and Dejan Kulusevski have spoken in glowing terms of the work the 69-year-old is doing with the team, with the Swede even joking that he deserves a pay rise (Football.London).
Although Spurs failed to score against Sporting Lisbon on Tuesday and fell to their first defeat of the season, they still showcased some interesting variations from set-pieces.
In the second half, Kane played a disguised ball over the top for Emerson Royal, who made a well-timed run behind the Sporting backline but was only able to get a tame connection.
On another set-piece situation from a central area, Kane himself made a smart run and was picked out by Son but the away side once again failed to make the most of the situation.
Hargreaves credited Vio for the smart variations that Conte’s men tried to execute on Tuesday.
The pundit told BT Sport (broadcast on 13/9; 18:58): “I tell you what, that set-piece coach is working some magic. It’s a great little run from Harry Kane, went all the way across the width of the box.
“I think he said he had 3000 different variations. Not sure he’s got that many, but we’ve seen a few tonight.”
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Kane’s ball over the top for Emerson was very smartly worked and caught out the Sporting backline. It was a shame that the Brazilian could not get a better connection on the shot.
Although goals from set-pieces have dried up a little for Spurs after the first few weeks, there is no doubt that we look a lot more threatening from corners and free-kicks than we did last season.
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