Trippier – A Defensive Liability

Having returned from World Cup 2018 with his reputation as a right wing-back enhanced, Kieran Trippier was looked upon as a major asset for Spurs.
However in a flat back-four as a right-back, on more than one occasion Trippier has been found wanting with his defensive duties which again was there for all to see against Wolves.   With a comfortable lead of 3-0 at the time with 22 minutes left in the second half, you would be forgiven for thinking that the match was over and that the opportunity would be there to boost our goal difference with more goals to come with Wolves at our mercy rather than what followed.  However, a sour taste was left in the mouth and a huge sigh of relief when the whistle blew to end the game having conceded two penalties which had given Wolves hope that they could make a miraculous comeback and ruin our hopes of returning to the top 4 at the expense of Arsenal.
The penny has to drop with Pochettino that Trippier cannot be trusted in a back four as his lack of defensive qualities highlighted throughout this season against the likes of Liverpool, Manchester City and Wolves have made the team more vulnerable than before.  However, Trippier’s qualities as a wing-back should not be overlooked for what he brings to the team which was demonstrated against Wolves with a pinpoint cross for Moura to score which adds to the two other assists Trippier has provided this season along with a fine goal against Fulham.

England Coach Gareth Southgate clearly thought during the World Cup that Trippier would be more effective as a right wing-back having made the bold decision to play Kyle Walker as one of three centre-backs which helped Trippier play to his strengths  In a must-win game against PSV Eindhoven tonight, Pochettino should consider selecting Aurier as our right-back to replace Trippier in a back four. Options to play 3 defenders with wing-backs is no longer an option with both Vertoghen and Dier out injured and the young Argentine Foyth not eligible for selection as he was not selected in our 25-man Champions League squad earlier this season.   

Gazzaniga whenever called upon has looked very assured as Goalkeeper and should be selected over Vorm for the suspended Hugo Lloris

A win tonight would keep our dreams alive of making a miraculous recovery in which we can only hope by winning our two home games that we can go to Barcelona hoping for another glory night in Europe.

My XI to start tonight’s game would be: Gazzaniga, Alderweireld, Sanchez, Aurier, Davies, Eriksen, Sissoko, Winks, Son, Kane, Moura (Formation 4-2-3-1)

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