EPL Horror Stories: Will Dos Santos Be As Unlucky As Cudicini?

illya mclellan@illya mclellan @illbehaviorNZSenior Analyst ISeptember 8, 2009

OTTAWA, CANADA - JULY 15:  Giovanni Dos Santos #10 of Mexico plays the ball across midfield past matias Cahais #6 of Argentina in their quarterfinal match of the FIFA U-20 2007 World Cup at Frank Clair Stadium on July 15, 2007 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Argentina defeated Mexico 1-0. (Photo by Phillip MacCallum/ Getty Images)

In the last few years it has become almost ridiculous the amount of players who could probably have extremely rewarding careers for all sorts of teams around the world while they have instead rotted on the bench and in the reserves for clubs in the English Premier League.

One example that always shone out for me was at Chelsea with Cudicini and Cech.

While Cudicini had been comfortable at Chelsea and had even won the golden gloves award while playing for them, it seemed that Claudio Ranieri was not quite convinced he had the right man for the job when he decided to sign Petr Cech.

Both of them were excellent goalkeepers and though at first it seemed there would be a bit of a conundrum concerning keepers for Jose Mourinho, Cech became the first choice leaving Cudicini to wait in the wings. Perhaps he had a good contract and was content to wait for his opportunity while he sat there as Cech got the plaudits from the press and the adoration from the fans.

He was even criticised in some quarters as lacking in ambition because of his willingness to play second fiddle to the Czech maestro, Cech.

Either way he ended up waiting far too long and is now not quite the keeper he seemed capable of becoming a few years ago.

His performances for Tottenham have looked shaky and though he has every opportunity to rise to the heights he once found himself at with Chelsea, it seems that Redknapp is not quite sold on him, as he was trying to bring David James to White Hart Lane before the transfer window closed.

While this incident underlines the point I was making about talent going to waste on the benches of the league, it is actually quite common around the world when it comes to championship-winning sides and their squads.

There are always players who could play starring roles elsewhere sitting on the bench for the bigger clubs.

However, in the last few seasons we have seen the problem spreading as more and more of the clubs in England's top tier begin to have quite top heavy squads.

An alarming example was made just a few days ago when young Giovani Dos Santos had a screaming game for Mexico in the FIFA World Cup CONCACAF qualifying group against Costa Rica, where the player who cannot seem to get a look in at Spurs scored a fine goal and laid on two others. 

Now Spurs may be a fine old club and could even be considered by some to be a big club, they are not however anywhere near as successful as their London neighbors Arsenal and Chelsea have been in the last few years.

In terms of prestige they are somewhat lacking when ranked alongside the likes of Real Madrid, Liverpool, or AC Milan who have been clubs that have had ridiculously skilled benches at times over the years.

Dos Santos was brought into the Spurs setup by the unfortunate Juande Ramos, who had a torrid time at the Lane which saw Spurs have their worst start to the season in almost 100 years.

However he was kept on the books by Redknapp and shrewd campaigner that he is, he may hopefully, for the youngster's sake, sit up and take notice after the performance Dos Santos gave for his national side.

The sad thing is that he has been wasting away on the bench at not only Spurs but also Ipswich which is bordering on absurd considering the performances he has been turning out for the Mexican national team of late.

Not only impressing in this match but before the new English season kicked off he was partly responsible for the embarrassment of the U.S. team when they travelled to Mexico loudly proclaiming they would finally end their record of never having defeated the Mexicans on their home turf.

Hopefully for the sake of one of the world's bright young footballing talents Redknapp is willing to give him a shot, or we may again see talent go to waste again like in the case of the unfortunate Carlo Cudicini.

What other players do you think have been robbed of a chance over the years after showing glimpses of their capabilities?