Date:Tuesday October 1 2013
As we all do, I was debating one of the many relevant or often irrelevant issues that surround football and our club, whilst trying to idle away some time.
One issue caused some interest was the Spurs XI and more pointedly, which of the current fringe, were the most unlucky not to be an automatic starter, for whatever reason. Obviously the likes of Lennon and Capoue weren't discussed as debating why we aren't playing an injured player is a waste of time, but what of the others, such as Defoe, Holtby and a few others?
Perhaps AVB has a ready made excuse in not starting every game with Younes Kaboul or Sandro due to their long injury rehabilitation and lack of pre season. Add to that their positional rivals have done well, so is it simply a case of biding their time and waiting for their chance? Many people believe that Kaboul and Vertonghen are our best pairing and Younes has looked decent in his cup games, but as much as we like to talk up the limitations of Michael Dawson, we have only conceded two goals with him in the team, so is there logic in keeping a frugal defence together? Of course we also have Vlad Chiriches, waiting for his chance, but again he will possibly need time and perhaps he and Kabs will have to prove their worth against Anzhi this Thursday, before getting a chance at the Premiership on a regular basis.
Sandro is loved by the fans, and rightly so. Not only a great player and character, but one that always plays with passion and he just ticks every box for the fans in terms on quality, commitment and humour. At a time when players are ever distancing themselves from the average man in the street, Sandro seems to be one of the minority that you could have a beer and laugh with down at your local. He even plays darts… Problem is, that he is up against Paulinho, who has been a sensation and Mousa Dembele, who perhaps offers a greater balance of creativity and grit over Sandro. That is also ignoring Capoue, who looked superb in the all too little time we have so far seen him. Picking two from those four is a hugely difficult task,, made harder by Sandro's barnstorming displays so far this season.
Like Chiriches, I suppose that Erik Lamela will have to bide his time, but he has also looked hugely promising when called upon, but equally, so have Andros Townsend and Gylfi Sigurdsson. Before the Chelsea game, I suggested that perhaps AVB would or should opt for Lamela over Townsend, but Andros proved me wrong with a very strong hour to perhaps make AVB right and me wrong in my selection. Based on current form is it difficult for Lamela or Nacer Chadli to force their way past the two first choice picks, whilst finding room elsewhere is equally difficult.
Two players that have excited me above all others have been Cristian Eriksen and Lewis Holtby, problem is that they have both occupied the same role in the team. it seems that when either one plays, they perform to the highest levels and seem to offer exactly what we missed last season. Both are superbly creative with real vision and team ethic, and if one was injured, the other would be the perfect replacement, but yet again, is Eriksen just that percentage better than his rival and therefore he gets the nod for the big games and Holtby has to be content with the B list ones? Could we fit both in, perhaps dropping Holtby deeper or wider? Again he is up against some excellent players, who are all fighting hard to retain their place and playing well.
In attack, Jermain Defoe looks sharp as a razor. Fit, strong and looking very motivated. His rival hasn't scored a Prem goal in open play, but may well be seen the the better all round player and one who has brought more to the team, whilst making space for the likes of Sigurdsson or Paulinho, something that isn't perhaps Jermain's strength. Should we worry about a lack of goals from a £26m striker, as long as the team is winning and he is causing trouble and making space for others? With Six Cup goals, Defoe has looked sharp and in form, but how much of that is down to the opposition as opposed to his outstanding play? Is there any reason to suggest that is he may have scored six, Soldado wouldn't have scored more. After all, he got two away to Tbilisi, and looked very impressive.
Can anyone argue that Kyle Naughton is deserving of a start, Zeki Fryers is better than Danny Rose or Brad Friedel is a safer bet in goal than Lloris? Probably not. So for me we are looking at one of Kaboul, Sandro, Defoe or Holtby as the Mr Unlucky, with Lamela, Chiriches and Chadli, still needing to be patient and wait for their chance. So which of the four is the most deserving of a starting place for you? I know some will argue that it is a squad game and not about a first XI, but if that were the case, should AVB be rotating these players more and not just using them for the Europa and Capital One Cups? It might well be a case that we accept that the players starting are slightly better than their rivals, but that doesn't make the omitted player less deserving of a start, but even more unlucky...
Date:Tuesday October 1 2013
Sunderland vs Tottenham Hotspur. (Saturday December 7 2013)
VIDEO: Villas-Boas Proud Of Team Resolve (Friday December 6 2013)
Smoke and Mirrors (Friday December 6 2013)
Hugo The Boss! (Friday December 6 2013)
Is it really that bad? (Thursday December 5 2013)
Don't make him angry. (Thursday December 5 2013)
Go support another club (Wednesday December 4 2013)
Fulham Vs Tottenham Hotspur. (Tuesday December 3 2013)
It's a race, but it's a marathon (Tuesday December 3 2013)
THE SPURS WAY!! (Tuesday December 3 2013)
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