Opinion: Five things we learned from Tottenham’s 2-1 win over Aston Villa

Nuno Espirito Santo
Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Tottenham Hotspur recorded a much-needed Premier League win over Aston Villa this afternoon, putting an end to a run of three straight defeats.

Let’s take a look at the five things we learned:

Change of formation – Nuno made the change from 4-3-3 to 4-2-3-1 today and it worked instant miracles. Still a lot of tactical tweaking and progress to me made but the use of a number 10 gave Spurs a consistent attacking outlet to link the midfield and the strikers. It just had a much nicer balance to it with more creativity and less sideways passing.

Dele dropped – The one to drop out to make room for the formation change was Dele Alli. This is a big crossroads for him as Nuno is now using arguably his best position in a number 10. If he can get straight back into the XI, it could be the making of him. If he struggles to compete with Ndombele and Lo Celso, it may be another tough season for him.

Emerson Royal, take a bow! – I felt sorry for Emerson having to make his first two starts in 3-0 defeats. It gave him no time to bed in or get used to the Premier League. Today, Emerson looked different class! He was tough in the tackle, aggressive, solid, put his body on the line and was a threat going forward too. What a performance!

New back two duo – Nuno partnered Eric Dier with Cristian Romero this afternoon, which I believe is our strongest current pairing. Dier sat and played it safe while Romero pushed up and tried to win the ball early. They complimented each other rather nicely and also both used the ball very well in attack. Definitely a platform to build from.

Harry Kane drought – Let’s be honest, six games isn’t much of a drought for most players but Harry Kane will be slated nonetheless. I thought he played a lot better today and actually go involved. On another day, he could have grabbed a goal or two. The good thing for Spurs is that the formation change brought him into things more and if Kane is into things, the goals aren’t far behind.

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