How the Spurs players rated against Watford

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Toby Alderweireld

Paulo Gazzaniga – 8 – He became the unlikely hero of the match after his defence let him down twice in the game. He looked good all game, showed composure facing Watford shots on goal and good distribution with the ball in his feet. He couldn’t do anything to save the goals but he was able to save 2 penalties in the shootout to take Tottenham to the next round.

Serge Aurier – 7 – It was a shame that his night ended early with an injury as he was having a pretty good game until then. He consistently found space on the right side and was an option all game long for his midfielders. His brilliant block on Sema in the first half was a goal saving one and showed his defensive abilities. His crossing could was hit and miss, and he could have been stronger to stop Success for the first goal, but he certainly played big part and should be considered for the starting XI in place of Trippier.

Toby Alderweireld – 6 – It was an up and down game for Alderweireld who played as the main distributor from defence with some delicious long passes to find his full backs and wingers. His tackling to stop Watford counters was also very impressive but he looked a little shaky at the back, especially for the goals, which was a concern.

Davinson Sanchez – 4 – Not a good game from the Colombian as he looked off from the start. He did not trust his ball playing ability and left that to Alderweireld while stopping very little at the back with him being at fault for the first goal. Without any impact on the game on either side, he won’t be able to see any game time, especially with the two Belgians looking good together.  

Ben Davies – 3 – This season could not have started worse for the Welsh left back as he put together another bad performance tonight. He offered next to nothing in the attacking end with his crossing stopping promising chances, and he was a liability at the back with his mistake bringing Watford’s late equalizer. 

Victor Wanyama – 3 – Another contender for the worst player of the match as the Kenyan showed rustiness from the injuries with a lackluster performance. His passing left a lot to be desired and Spurs never looked threatening before he made way for Dembele. 

Harry Winks – 5 – Even though the young midfielder was very hungry and determined; he lacked the quality to affect the game until the very end. He also could have done better in Watford’s first goal, but he was generally okay in that end. However, his usual quality passing was missing tonight and Tottenham needed exactly that in the absence of Eriksen. His pass to Dembele in the second goal created it and he improved towards the end but a good Winks tonight would have killed the game off earlier.

Moussa Sissoko – 5 – Not as bad as the usual outings we see from the Frenchman but he was again not great. His first touch let him down numerous times and he was only a factor on the other side of the pitch. His chip pass to Alli was the highlight of his night but not much else happened for him until he was subbed off.

Dele Alli – 6 – A frustrating game for Alli as he showed flashes of brilliance but he was let down by his teammates. There was very little movement and creativity in the attacking third for him to be effective, and that was highlighted even more by the increase in his levels after Son and Dembele entered the match. He won the penalty, got Kabasele sent off,  and scored 2 penalties on his return to Milton Keynes, so all in all, not a bad night. 

Erik Lamela – 6 – The Argentinian suffered the same faith as Dele, as not having a recognized striker for long periods of time really hurt his play. He looked a bit lost in attack but his energy off the ball to get in tackles and chase down balls was very impressive. He improved as with the rest of the team after Watford’s first goal and his brilliant counter attack chip goal deserved to be the winner. Alas, he kept his cool to score a penalty in the shootout which capped off a good night for him. 

Lucas Moura – 4 – Not a good match for the Brazilian as being the only striker on the pitch affected his play very badly. He could not impact the game as well as he could, and he fluffed his lines from the only chance he could manage all game. He was rightly subbed off for Llorente.

Subs

Heung-Min Son – 7 – As soon as he came on, the game changed completely, as he became a thorn on the right side of Watford. He demanded the ball, took on defenders, and created multiple chances. This was a very good performance from the Korean who should be a lock for the starting XI.

Mousa Dembele – 6 – Taking off Wanyama alone would have been welcome for Spurs, but bringing on Dembele with fresh legs to run at tired legs and pile pressure on Watford helped the team immensely. In my opinion the Belgian is perfect for this role where he can save his legs and impact the game even more as a super sub, just like Lamela.  

Fernando Llorente– 5 – He had a glorious headed chance to equalize which he missed, and he did not have much more impact on the game than that. He scored a great penalty in the shootout after receiving a decent amount of trash talk from Gomes.

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