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Etienne Capoue is another to shine this summer. Has he impressed enough for Pochettino to start him?
As mentioned on the previous page, Pochettino's uncertainty about the condition of players returning from the World Cup means Mousa Dembele and Paulinho's status for Saturday is up in the air.
Neither played in pre-season so we have no idea what their new boss has in mind for them individually. Nor who he might pair them with in what—based on the formation predominantly fielded this summer—will be a two-man central midfield.
Even if Pochettino does not start either of them against West Ham, he still has choices to make.
His much-declared preference for attacking football makes a more defensive-minded presence a must.
Etienne Capoue's commanding work anchoring the midfield in pre-season should have made Pochettino take notice. Even considering for the less competitive environment, the Frenchman was efficient in possession and timely in his interventions when Spurs were under pressure.
Illness disrupted Sandro's summer, but he does not need too much prompting to do a job as midfield enforcer.
As seen against Schalke, Nabil Bentaleb is a little more cultured floating back there, and he can hold his own too. Pochettino's evaluation of the Algerian is particularly intriguing given the teenager's rise to prominence in 2014.
Lewis Holtby has made the most of the absence of Dembele and Paulinho this summer, staking his claim for a regular place with a clutch of energetic, largely positive outings. Although selected further forward on a few occasions, central midfield is the most likely position for a player whose all-encompassing tenacity is his greatest quality.
Holtby might be best suited for the potentially scrappy contest with West Ham (at least if Dembele is not declared fit). A more surprise selection would come in the form of either Tom Carroll or Ryan Mason.
The latter was one of the surprise packages of the summer given he had previously been out of the frame of the first-team picture.
Confident and adventurous in his ball work, Mason was sensible and hard-working off it. The frequent loanee appeared to have a decent understanding with Capoue too.
Carroll was typically tidy in his passing but probably has more work to do to convince the manager he can be assertive enough in a midfield two upon which a big demand will be placed on.
Phew! Good luck, Mauricio, choosing between all these.