Opinion: Nile John and Oliver Skipp continue to impress

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Oliver Skipp
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

A number of senior players were on display again in this evening’s pre-season friendly at MK Dons.

Nuno Espirito Santo decided to start with a front four of Lucas, Dele, Bergwijn and Son, while it was great to see the likes of Reguilon and Doherty back in the mix, both full-backs will have much to prove this season, with Doherty failing to live up to expectation last year and Reguilon’s form dipping after his injury.

After a good first half against Colchester United in the last outing, it was MK Dons who impressed most in the opening exchanges of this pre-season friendly. Just five minutes in and Alfie Whiteman came charging out and rather poorly brought down the onrushing MK Dons forward, the young shot-stopper made up for his mistake though as he saved the resulting spot-kick.

A player who continues to impress is Steven Bergwijn, after good displays in the first two friendlies, it was the lively winger who impressed most in the opening exchanges, firstly hanging a ball up at the back post for Son to bring down but blast over, followed by Son playing Bergwijn through only for him to snatch at his chance.

Although the competition has been short of the quality Spurs will soon face in the Premier League, it’s been great to see Nuno’s play on the front foot and with some creative freedom, notable exchanges between Dele, Son and Bergwijn with some excellent one-touch moves, which will have Spurs fans hoping we can continue that into the season. It was certainly refreshing to see after a season of structure and lifeless football last year.

MK Dons were proving to be very well organised at the back as Tottenham dropped off the pace and chances became harder to come by, that was until the 35th minute when an excellent through ball from Lucas fed Son in behind the defence and the South Korean cleverly chipped the ball home.

A solid first-half where there could and probably should have been more than one goal, the front four of Lucas, Dele, Bergwijn and Son all impressing again.

The biggest positive was how comfortable John and Skipp look in midfield together, both compliment each other well with Skipp being that bit more defensive-minded and John full of energy and often making that run beyond to get into forward positions.

Everything to be taken with a pinch of salt of course, but in terms of a double-pivot in the Europa Conference League, John and Skipp seem like they would be able to hold their own and get some regular first-team football to continue their development.

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