Uninterested? Lethargic? Poor man’s Lampard?
I have heard all of the above in regards to our supposed next big thing from Brazil, Jose Paulo Bezerra Maciel Junior, or as we know him, Paulinho. I have tended to agree for the most part, but is there more to this player than we realize?
Let’s start at the beginning, a fairly tidy Brazilian is signed for £17m. Take out the word Brazilian and there is not much to be excited about, in a year where Mr Gareth Bale was heading out, we as fans were craving big, very big in fact, money signings to make us feel just that little bit better about our talisman departing. But the fact this player was Brazilian just gave that little tingle in the stomach of a potential new star at the Lane.
Life at Tottenham started quite well for the newly crowned Confederations Cup winner, nicking a few goals and always seeming to be involved in anything that was happening on the pitch, a trait some would have expected if they had watched him during that fantastic confederations cup run with Brazil, but as the season grew older, you just had this little feeling that he wasn’t quite performing to the level that we as fans expect, don’t get me wrong he gets in fantastic positions, then almost Dider Zokora-esk, manages to miss the target most times.
Frustrating is one way of describing Paulinho, another is quite frankly just not good enough, not my opinion, but that of many others I have spoken to. For me he has all the attributes to succeed at Tottenham, he is strong, fairly quick for a big man, has a good energy about him, but the one thing I felt he lacked was true passion, I felt he never cared whether we won, lost or drew, his face almost never changing, he seemed like he was just along for the ride, with no wonder for the eventual destination.
That was until I saw this man giving the team talk during Brazil’s torturous yet victorious battle with Mexico, the passion that oozed from him, barking out like a true leader, the rest of the Brazil team, players like Neymar, Thiago Silva and David Luiz, hanging on his every word, feeling his passion and letting it transfuse unto them, this is the man I want at the heart of Tottenham’s midfield, you can argue this was for Brazil at a home World Cup, but to me what I saw was a passion for football, and a desire to win, both of which can be transferred to Tottenham.
In short I hope Paulinho is here to stay, and spearhead our next charge.
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