Tottenham Hotspur: 3 Troublesome Issues Spurs Must Address as Soon as Possible
Am I the only one who wishes there were a camera following Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas around these past 24 hours?
AVB's Spurs side fell 4-2 at home in the boss's first match with his former club, Chelsea, where he had been sacked less than a year ago. It was just another big win for the Blues since they cut ties with AVB, what with successor Roberto di Matteo guiding the club to the FA Cup and Champions League titles after they had started the season so poorly under Villas-Boas.
Forget Being: Liverpool: How gripping would it be to follow the volatile boss as he drowns his sorrows at his local? (At least that's what I imagine him doing at the moment).
As for Spurs, though, the loss was not a pretty one.
Yes, it was against the Premier League leaders and didn't result in much of a drop in the standings (Spurs went from level with Everton for fourth to trailing them by one point), but there were some troubling signs throughout the match.
Here is a sampling of those issues that need some attention from the club.
Who Is the Goalkeeper?
Ever since Spurs acquired France's captain and keeper Hugo Lloris from Lyon in the August transfer window, there has been great anticipation surrounding the 25-year-old taking the 41-year-old incumbent's place.
However, current keeper Brad Friedel has not yet played himself out of his position, instead defying age and playing fairly well. Still, Lloris is obviously the keeper of the future and will, sooner or later, become the starter at White Hart Lane.
Now, I have no problem with Villas-Boas sticking with Friedel for a while. However, as anyone who has played in goal or at the back can attest to, consistency at the keeper position is vital to a team's defensive unit.
After Friedel put in a stellar performance against Manchester United, AVB gave Lloris the start against Villa two weeks ago and then went back to Friedel against Chelsea on Saturday.
Perhaps this was merely a way to give Lloris some playing time before the international break, but this type of rotation is unacceptable.
AVB needs to pick a starting keeper and stick with him.
Can We Get a New Captain?
Against Chelsea, veteran French defender William Gallas put in one of the worst performances by a goal-scorer in recent memory. His poor clearances led to each of Chelsea's first two goals, while he was caught asleep at the back on their third.
Now, with left-back Benoit Assou-Ekotto's injury pushing Jan Vertonghen into that fullback position, center-back Younes Kaboul's lingering injury and center-back Michael Dawson's being out of favor, Gallas is not losing his starting spot in the near future.
However, this does not mean that Gallas' spot is assured indefinitely, especially if he continues performing as he did on Saturday.
The problem with this situation is that Gallas is actually the captain of the club right now.
Seeing as a captain sets the tone for the rest of his side, I see it as a detriment to have Gallas as the captain, especially considering the possibility that he might be warming the bench in the near future.
Gareth Bale or Jan Vertonghen would be much better choices for Spurs going forward.
When Should We Lose Patience with New Signings?
While summer signings Jan Vertonghen and Moussa Dembele have instantly settled in at White Hart Lane, other signings have not done so well to start their Tottenham careers.
Obviously, the two that stand out in this statement are Icelander Gylfi Sigurdsson and American Clint Dempsey.
Dempsey's play has been less-than-stellar, evidenced by his lethargic performance against Chelsea on Saturday. I am willing to give a pass to him here, seeing as he was coming off a mid-week match in Kansas City and forced to play out wide on the left because of Bale's absence, but I would understand feeling the opposite.
On the other hand, Sigurdsson has really underperformed at the Lane, really struggling to find the same form he enjoyed with Swansea last season. In contrast to Dempsey's tired performance against Chelsea, Sigurdsson's movement was adequate. However, his touch and shot were way off, as he wasted a couple golden opportunities.
Despite all this, Dempsey and Sigurdsson have still been getting regular playing time, with at least one of them playing in every Premier League match this season.
So, when should our patience run out? At what point should Spurs bench these players and let them work their issues out in lesser matches?
What do you think?
Do you disagree with any of these points? And are there any more that I neglected to mention?
Let me know in the comment section below!
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