Tottenham Hotspur: Points to Ponder from Draw vs. Norwich City
The horror start to the 2012/13 English Premier League season continued for Tottenham Hotspur on the weekend—failing to secure all three points with another defensive lapse in the final ten minutes of the match.
What can we learn from their most recent match, and how can we apply that for the remainder of the Premier League season?
Here's some thoughts and questions to ponder for Tottenham's year ahead.
What Is Hugo Lloris' Place in the Side?
Tottenham brought in French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris over the summer transfer window as a replacement for the aging Brad Friedel. But after watching the American play against Norwich, Spurs would be wise to consider who starts ahead of who at the moment.
The 41-year-old was one of the club's best players against the Canaries—miraculously keeping a Robert Snodgrass header out to save the North London club from defeat—and proving that he still has what it takes to compete in the Premier League in the process.
Lloris is a smart buy by Daniel Levy, but he isn't an automatic starter in my eyes. Not when Friedel is displaying the form that he currently is.
What Is Moussa Dembele's Role?
From now on, Tottenham must start Moussa Dembele in every single match than they can for the remainder of the season. The summer transfer was superb off the bench—perhaps even their best player for the entire match—and provided great spark for the club after half time.
Dembele was the heart and drive of Fulham's midfield and can do so for Tottenham, with players like Gareth Bale, Emmanuel Adebayor, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Clint Dempsey around him.
He will liven Spurs attack and give them the required go-forward that they will need to compete in the English Premier League this season.
Who's at Fault in the Defense?
They might have only conceded four goals in three Premier League matches, but something has to be said about Tottenham's defense and some blame has to be dished out for their inability to close out matches.
Spurs looked at threat from Norwich constantly in general play; were that a better Premier League unit, they'd have dispatched Villas-Boas men with a comfortable three or four goal drubbing.
Jan Vertonghen needs to organize this defense, get William Gallas to screw his head on properly, and start to build the platform that Tottenham desperately need to pick up three points week in and week out.
Otherwise they're just adding unnecessary pressure on themselves—and they'll continue to concede late goals that cost them results.
Emmanuel Adebayor Needs to Start
For mine, Emmanuel Adebayor needs to start for Spurs, as he would give them a great attacking option in the middle—a true striker, if you will.
Gareth Bale and Gylfi Sigurdsson are more than capable of delivering in great balls on the wings and with Moussa Dembele in behind him, Adebayor could begin to demonstrate some of the fine form he had at White Hart Lane towards the end of last season.
Jermaine Defoe is simply not the answer.
When Are They Going to Win?
Ultimately, this is the question that all Spurs fans (and those who are struggling in their respective tipping competitions) want to know—when are they going to start winning and getting the results that they should be attaining all along?
This is a very good side—there is no doubt about that—that have made excellent moves all summer long to strengthen their squad and give them the attacking talent needed to compete in the English Premier League.
The recent signings of Dembele and Dempsey will surely start to yield rewards, but Spurs need that to start happening sooner rather than later.
Spurs' next Premier League match is away to Reading on September 15, 2012.
What did you make of the draw vs. Norwich City?
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