Friedel; Walker-Kaboul-Vertonghen-Assou-Ekotto; Sandro-VanDerVaart; Lennon-Sigurdsson-Bale;Defoe
Goalkeeper: Brad Friedel
There isn’t any real doubt here in my mind. Brad had a superb season last year, steady and secure with the gloves and mistakes were extremely few and far between. Despite his age, he has proven time and time again that he can perform on the biggest stage and us Spurs fans have no reason to worry about him in goal.
Right-back: Kyle Walker
Again, a certainty into the starting eleven. We all know how great he is when given the freedom to attack down the right wing, but we also saw last season how accomplished he is in a defensive sense. Kyle developed into a fan favourite last season, particularly after his free-kick against Blackburn, and given time to improve he can definitely become one of the best full-backs in the world.
Centre-back: Younes Kaboul
In my view, a potential captain for Spurs this season due to his command of the defence and his presence on a football field. A quick and strong defender, he can also effectively bring the ball out of defence and is great in the penalty area at either end. With Younes breaking through into the French first team, last season was his best yet and should be one of the first names on the team sheet.
Centre-back: Jan Vertonghen
Jan received such rave reviews in the Eredivisie, winning Player of the Year last season, that I am sure he will step up and perform in the Premier League this year. He is known to have an awesome attacking threat, getting into double figures last season, but is also an extremely pacy and gifted defender. He is something of an unknown package to Spurs fans, but could become a real stalwart for us this season.
Left-back: Benoit Assou-Ekotto
A player with mixed reviews from Spurs fans. Some consider him to be an impressive and consistent defender with a decent attacking threat, but others consider him to be a liability. However, with only the out-of-favour with Spurs fans Danny Rose as back-up, it seems like Benny will find himself a place in the first XI. Known for scoring wonder-goals, but also for dangerously playing himself out of trouble, he will hope to have a great season and establish himself as one of the best left-backs in the league.
Defensive Midfielder: Sandro
Sandro is one of the most highly-rated central midfielders in the EPL at the moment and has the potential to become the best. He is awesome at breaking up attacks and hassling opponents, a great shield for the back four, but also provides an attacking threat with his surging runs forward – Spurs will be hoping he can add a few goals in the coming season. But he is a definite in the starting XI.
Deep-lying Midfielder: Rafael Van Der Vaart
Despite receiving some criticism lately for how much he actually adds to the team, Rafa should be an automatic inclusion for his creativity and goal-threat alone. He can deliver one pass which can turn a game in an instant and can drift into space to open up an opportunity to score. His goals last season were a crucial addition and he generally plays very well against the Gooners! The position he will take up under AVB is unclear – I’ve put him as a deep-lying centre-mid – but he ought to be included somewhere.
Right-winger: Aaron Lennon
Aaron’s speed is a necessity in any team. He can stretch a defence and often pull two defenders towards him, opening up space for Kyle and Rafa to exploit. However, he can also beat a man himself and put delightful crosses in for our strikers and attacking midfielders to get on the end of. Lennon just needs to work on his crossing consistency and he can develop into a top player for Spurs. AVB will consider his place in the team, with Gio and Bentley waiting in the wings, so to speak, to take his place.
Attacking Midfielder: Gylfi Sigurdsson
If we don’t sign a top striker, then Gylfi’s goals could be the difference between making the top 4 and not. He can create a goal from nothing, shooting powerfully but accurately from outside the area. Spurs need to hope he can continue and improve from his fine form at Swansea as his potential is literally endless – AVB will hope he can score 15 goals this season and create many more – and he is a certainty to be in the team.
Left-winger: Gareth Bale
The first name on the team sheet every week, for sure. His pace and precision down the wings is second-to-none in this league and he can terrorise many a defence on his day. He needs to have a 15-goal season, which he is certainly capable of, but he also needs to supply chances to our striker(s) and fellow midfielders, as he can pick out excellent passes and crosses.
Striker: Jermain Defoe
For the moment, JD makes the team. But this depends on who we sign before September 1st, as he isn’t really lone-striker build or height. I have no doubt that JD can score goals, his power and placement is excellent, but holding the ball up will be tough for him. But at the moment, what can AVB do other than play JD? Harry Kane is just not ready for the EPL yet.
Who do the fans want to see in the team? Is there anyone I have glaringly overlooked?
By Alex Beck
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