Blogs | Fresh Spurs - Part 10


Spurs In Shock As Star Wants Out In The Summer, Will He Complete A Move Away?

Spurs are in shock as reports suggest that winger Erik Lamela wants to leave the club in the summer, in favour of a move back to his former club Roma. 

The Argentine hasn’t played for Spurs since the 2-1 EFL Cup defeat at Anfield back in October, and has been sidelined ever since due to a hip injury. At the time, Mauricio Pochettino at the time explained that the injury was nothing serious, and that the recovery process would take a few weeks.

However, here we are coming to the end of January, and Lamela is still out of action. We heard a couple of weeks ago that the winger would return to his former club Roma, to see a doctor that he trusted from his time at the club to see what he could do to speed up the recovery.

Mauricio Pochettino was able to give an update on the injury to Lamela after the 2-2 draw at Manchester City on Saturday evening. Here is what he had to say.

The result was the same so now it’s about how he adapts his programme. Now he’ll start to run. It’s positive, now it’s about building his fitness and to try to challenge the pain he feels in his hip, but I think this will be positive.

Despite Pochettino seeming very focused on getting the winger back to full fitness and back amongst the first team, it has been reported by Squawka that the 24-year-old is interested in moving back to Roma in the summer.

This long spell on the sidelines with injury has left Lamela feeling isolated from the rest of the squad, as well as frustrated as the initial signs suggested that the injury was only minor. We also have heard reports that the death of his dog Simba, who Lamela seemed to be very close to, has also had an effect on the Argentine’s state of mind.

Will Lamela make a move away over the summer?

After a disappointing couple of seasons at White Hart Lane, the instalment of Mauricio Pochettino as manager at Spurs has helped to get the very best out of Erik Lamela. After his purple patch since the Argentine arrived as manager, it would seem that a decision to leave a club with a coach that you know can get the very best out of you as a player would not be taken lightly. It is of course understandable that a player would get extremely frustrated when trying to recover from an injury that seemed minor in the first place.

Do I have any doubts about Lamela feeling unsettled at the moment? No. But would I be surprised if he moved back to Roma over the summer? Yes, I would be very surprised.

Spurs Set To Make Move For Serie A Defender As Vertonghen Replacement, Will The Deal Go Ahead?

The London Evening Standard report that Spurs are readying a move for Inter Milan defender Andrea Ranocchia, and will be looking to get a deal over the line by the end of the month. 

Jan Vertonghen picked up an ankle ligament injury in the 4-0 Premier League win against West Brom, and could be in for six weeks on the sidelines.

Mauricio Pochettino has been looking around his squad for replacement, and fielded Kevin Wimmer on the left of a back three in Saturday’s 2-2 draw against Manchester City. However, the Austrian was hauled off at the break in favour of a change in system as Pep Guardiola’s side dominated the first half, but failed to break the deadlock.

With the Argentine boss looking to implement the three at the back more often than not on matchday, it would seem sensible to bring in some centre-back cover, especially following Wimmer’s failure to perform on Saturday evening and Vertonghen’s injury.

Spurs have a busy schedule coming up in the remainder of January and February, with the Europa League set to make its return in the middle of February. Mauricio Pochettino will be looking to keep his squad as fresh as possible to keep his side’s run going in the FA Cup and Europa League, whilst mounting a decent Premier League title challenge too.

Inter Sporting Director values Andrea Ranocchia at approximately £5m, but would be open to offers in terms of a loan move until the summer, where there would be an option to buy. Pochetttino will not look to break the bank for centre-back cover, and a move for Ranocchia would seem like a good move.

The Italian defender has played just five times for Inter in Serie A this season, and his strength does seem to be in the air, winning 86% of his aerial duels over the course of this season.

Will the move happen?

In terms of centre-backs, Spurs have Eric Dier, Toby Alderweireld, Kevin Wimmer and Cameron Carter-Vickers that can all play in a back three. Ben Davies can be added to that list, as we saw him play on the left of a back three for Wales at the European Championships.

The injury layoff of six weeks for Vertonghen is a fairly lengthy one, meaning he will not return until the start of March at the earliest. The fixtures will have already started to pile up by then, and at £5m, I think this is a risk for Mauricio Pochettino that is worth taking.

3 Things We Learned As Spurs Snatched A Point In 2-2 Draw Against Manchester City

Spurs came from two goals behind at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday to snatch a point from Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City on Saturday evening. A goal from Dele Alli and a crucial leveller from Hueng-min Son cancelled out two Hugo Lloris shockers in the Spurs goal. Here are three things we learned as a points were shared in Manchester. 

1) The back three won’t work against everybody

We have seen Mauricio Pochettino set up his Tottenham team in a 3-5-2, 3-4-2-1 or 3-4-3, whichever way to want to look at it, at different points throughout this season.

Spurs first played with a three at the back against Arsenal, and it was a success as the Lilywhites battled away for a 1-1 draw at the Emirates, to bring to an end a horrible run of form, despite being beaten just once in that run prior to the North London derby.

Pochettino decided to play a back three against Hull in a 3-0 win, and has stuck with this system ever since. However, we did learn that despite conquering Chelsea at White Hart Lane at the start of the year, the three at the back formation will not work against absolutely everybody.

Having three at the back means having one less in the midfield if you take into the account the wing-back not really being involved in a midfield battle, more a battle down the wings. Despite the best efforts of Victor Wanyama and Mousa Dembele, Manchester City bossed the first twenty minutes, and that was mainly down to the fact that they were winning the midfield battle, and as a result, overloading the Spurs defence.

‘Like Playing With 10 Men’ Spurs Fans Slam Midfielder For Display vs Manchester City

Spurs came from two goals behind at the Etihad Stadium to salvage a point against Manchester City in a game dominated by the home side. 

Manchester City bossed the first half, and it took some good defending from Toby Alderweireld and Danny Rose, combined with a couple of decent stops from Hugo Lloris to keep the game goalless going into half-time.

A slow start to the game prompted Mauricio Pochettino to switch to a back four, with Eric Dier pushing up to play just in front of the back four. The Spurs boss waited until half-time to make personnel changes, bringing Hueng-min Son on in place of Kevin Wimmer.

Hugo Lloris, Spurs’ saviour for most of this season, was the culprit on both occasions for an early second half collapse. A long ball from Kevin De Bruyne saw Sane through, Lloris’ diving header deflected off the Manchester City man, leaving him with a tap-in for 1-0.

The hosts doubled their lead five minutes later, Lloris spilling a low cross into the path of De Bruyne, who made it 2-0 to Manchester City.

However, Spurs came up with a quick response, and fired themselves back into the contest. The ball broke to Kyle Walker on the edge of the box, who picked out Dele Alli at the back stick, who continued his excellent goalscoring form with another headed finish.

Then came the moment of controversy that will prove to be the main talking point of the contest. Raheem Sterling found himself through on goal, only to be pushed in the back by Kyle Walker and see his shot saved by Lloris. Appeals for a spot kick were waved away quickly.

Tottenham took full advantage of their good fortune, and fired themselves level little under a minute later. Harry Kane laid a ball of to substitute Heung-min Son, who finished well into the corner for a level game. And that is how it finished.

One player that disappointed for Spurs on the day for Christian Eriksen. He did play the ball through to Harry Kane for the lay off and subsequent goal, but I am sure I am not the only one who would liked to have seen more from the Danish international.

Eriksen was a shadow of his usual creative self, and failed to have any real impact on the game. The midfielder didn’t great a single chance, complete a single take on, or win a single tackle. Mauricio Pochettino will want much more from Eriksen in the big games from now on.

On the balance of play, it is a most undeserved point that Spurs have picked up. Despite losing at Manchester United, this was a similar game in the way that Spurs’ big players failed to turn up. This is something the Lilywhites must work on going into the rest of the season.

Davies Or Wimmer? Tottenham Team News & Predicted Line-Up To Face Manchester City

Second-placed Spurs will look to close the gap on league leaders Chelsea to four points with a win in the evening kickoff against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium. 

Pep Guardiola will be looking for a big response from his team after they took a towelling at Goodison Park last Sunday, as they fell to a 4-0 defeat against Everton. Jan Vertonghen and Erik Lamela are the only players out for this one. Here is the Spurs predicted line-up to face Manchester City in a massive game in the title race.

GK: Hugo Lloris

Another clean sheet for Lloris last week against West Brom. I back him to start again at the Etihad Stadium for this one.

CB: Eric Dier

A defensive midfielder for all of last season, but now Eric Dier finds himself playing on the right of a back three almost every week. I think he will start here.

CB: Toby Alderweireld

Despite the absence of Jan Vertonghen, I think due to the success of the back three system thus far, Pochettino will stick to that formation.

CB: Ben Davies

We all saw how successful Wales were in the European Championships last summer, and Davies played on the left of a back three for his national team. He showed he was capable there, and he would be my pick to stand in for the injured Jan Vertonghen.

RWB: Kyle Walker

The more I see Walker play in the wing-back position, the better suited he seems to that role. He will be a nightmare for Manchester City defenders on Saturday evening getting forward causing problems.

LWB: Danny Rose

The same goes for Rose. He has established himself among the best left-backs in Europe in the last few months, and he will be a key player for Spurs if they are to beat Manchester City.

Spurs Could Make Bid For Quality Premier League Midfielder, Will They Land Their Man?

Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has reportedly turned down a move to China that could have earned the midfielder around a staggering £430,000-per-week. 

The reason he turned down the big money move to the Chinese Super League is because Toure values the standard of football more than he does the money. Hearing that from a Premier League player is promising, and we hope that no others are tempted by a move to China in the next few transfer windows, although it seems like Diego Costa might be tempted.

Some of you might ask the question, why is Yaya Toure being linked with a move away from Manchester City so soon after rejecting this big money move to China. Well, as the Metro report, the Ivorian could be heading into his last few months at the Etihad Stadium. This is due to the fact that Pep Guardiola is thought to not be keen on the idea of renewing Toure’s contract at the end of the season.

The Metro have been rating each of the top six’s chances of signing the midfielder over the summer transfer window, and they claim that Spurs have a ‘2 out of 5’ chance of making an offer for the 33-year-old come the end of the season.

Toure has made ten league appearances for Pep Guardiola’s side after resolving an off the field issue earlier on this campaign, and seems to be enjoying his football. The midfielder has scored on three occasions this season and despite recording no assists, Toure has created nine chances and made nine key passes this term.

Guardiola and Toure himself will have been less than impressed with his performance on Sunday afternoon as Manchester City fell to a 4-0 defeat against Everton at Goodison Park. At 33 years of age, you would have to question whether Toure would be able to perform consistently at a high level for Spurs.

Will Spurs go for Toure over the summer?

If you look at the midfielders currently is Spurs’ squad, they are pretty well covered with the starting pair of Victor Wanyama and Mousa Dembele backed up by Harry Winks and Eric Dier. Four defensive midfielders would seem reasonable for rotational purposes and for injuries. However, with Pochettino now switching to a back three, Eric Dier now drops in at the back, leaving Spurs with just Harry Winks as backup in the midfield.

With this formation change that Mauricio Pochettino has implemented into the side, Spurs might want to look at additional backup in the defensive midfield either now or in the summer, even more so after selling Tom Carroll to Swansea.

Despite turning down a massive move to China, Yaya Toure’s wages are still pretty sizeable. Taking this into account, along with his age, I think that Spurs will look elsewhere for defensive midfield cover, perhaps targeting a younger player to slot into the squad.

Nine Changes: Tottenham Team News And Predicted Line-Up To Face West Brom

Spurs return to Premier League action against West Brom on Saturday in the lunchtime 12:30 kickoff. The Lilywhites can momentarily go to within four points of leaders and into second with a win at White Hart Lane. 

Erik Lamela remains Mauricio Pochettino’s only injury concern, who has returned to Rome to complete his recovery from a hip injury. Here is the Spurs 3-4-2-1 predicted line-up to face West Brom.

GK: Hugo Lloris

The Frenchman has been solid in between the sticks for the entirety of this season, and there is no reason why he will not start on Saturday against West Brom.

CB: Eric Dier

Dier is one of the most versatile players I have seen at Spurs in a long time. Once upon a time, he used to play right-back. Now he can play as a centre-back or as defensive midfielder. He can do a job almost anywhere on the pitch. He should start in a back three here.

CB: Toby Alderweireld

Alderweireld was one of the players to start both against Chelsea and Aston Villa. He was taken off after seventy minutes last week after another strong showing. He should start in the middle of the back three here.

CB: Jan Vertonghen

The back three consisting of Vertonghen, Alderweireld and Dier was really effective against Chelsea in the 2-0 win, and I trust that Pochettino will stick with the same back three for this return to Premier League action.

RWB: Kyle Walker

Both Manchester City and Manchester United have linked with moves for Walker and Rose. Personally I can’t see this happening. Both are in terrific form at Spurs, they are happy as far as we can see. Despite the fairly small amount of speculation, he should start against West Brom.

LWB: Danny Rose

The competitiveness in the squad has clearly benefited both Rose and Walker, but Rose is in the form of his life. He is much more dangerous going forward in this wing-back role, and Walker is too. The two should start on Saturday.

3 Transfers Spurs Should Complete This Month To Win The Premier League

It’s been a quiet window so far for Pochettino and Tottenham, but with the Premier League title very much within sight, the club must look to be active in the January market. I’ve been observing the media reports and taken my favourites. Here are 4 transfers Tottenham should complete this month in an attempt to help them win the league.

1 – Sebastian Driussi

The latest reports suggest Tottenham could be in the running to sign 20-year-old striker Sebastian Driussi.

According to The Independent, Tottenham are planning talks with River Plate and the youngster reportedly has a £10million asking price, for me, that would be a good deal. An avid watcher of Argentinean football, I’ve seen first hand the quality that he has. His form has attracted interest from the likes of Paris Saint-Germain and to be honest, I find it hard to believe that River would accept just £10milliom, especially with the calibre of clubs interested.

Vincent Janssen is still struggling at the club, meaning Pochettino desperately needs another attacking option. Driussi is a good alternative.

Driussi is currently the top scorer in the Argentine division with 10 goals in 14 games. Although it is a very different division to the Premier League, it is by no means easy

The only concern or issue I could possibly foresee with this one is a work permit problem – as he is yet to receive a full international cap for his country.

Vincent Janssen: Where Has It All Gone Wrong?

Vincent Janssen arrived from AZ Alkmaar in the summer for a fee of £17m with high hopes of succeeding in the Premier League with Tottenham Hotspur. To say things haven’t gone to plan so far would be an understatement…

The Dutchman looked impressive in pre-season and in the early stages of this season, but has failed to get any momentum going, not to mention that Janssen has failed to score a goal from open play in a Spurs shirt.

It all started off so well for the 22-year-old. A goal against Inter Milan in a friendly was a good start to his Spurs carrerr, but I was really impressed with what I saw from Janssen in the opening game of the season at Goodison Park. Spurs were 1-0 down and playing some of the worst football I had seen them play in a long time. That was until Janssen entered the pitch off the bench.

The striker held the ball up unbelievably well, and from the moment he came on, Spurs looked a completely different side, knocking the ball around with a bit of confidence. Soon after the substitution, Spurs were level through an Erik Lamela header and it was a completely different game. Janssen had changed the game coming off the bench. He did in fact have a chance to score a Premier League debut goal and secure all three points, but saw his close range shot saved.

Janssen looked equally as impressive in the game against Crystal Palace. He played in a two up front with Harry Kane, and held the ball up well once again and put in a strong performance. The only thing missing from what was a good display was a goal, missing a good chance when played through by Dele Alli.

The 22-year-old Spurs striker did not seem to be too fazed by the two misses early on in the season, but it is worth noting that apart from the Liverpool game after the Palace win, we have rarely seen the striking partnership of Kane and Janssen, which I think is the key to unlocking all of the Dutchman’s potential.

August was a good month for Janssen, and I am sure that I joined many Spurs fans in thinking it would be a matter of time before the Dutch international bagged his first goal in a Spurs shirt. We would be right in the sense that Janssen would go on to net against Gillingham in the EFL Cup, but it was from the penalty spot as the wait went on for a first goal from open play.

The longer that wait has gone on, the more Janssen’s confidence has dropped. His first team minutes have been limited too, also knocking his confidence. Despite Janssen going on to score from the penalty spot in games against Leicester and Liverpool, we are still yet to see the first goal from open play.

In the game on Sunday against Aston Villa, we saw the definition of a striker extremely low on confidence. Although the goals were not flooding in early on in the season, Janssen’s hold up play appeared to be strong and he could lay a good ball off or in behind the defence. Now, even that has gone. The Dutchman now takes way too long on the ball to make a decision, and his movement around defenders is nowhere near good enough.

He seems afraid to make runs in behind, just in case he misses the eventual chance that may fall his way. There is a huge difference between being out of form and being low on confidence. When Harry Kane is out of form, he may not score, but he gets himself into positions to score. That is the difference, and this mental block that Janssen has is something that he must overcome, and fast.

I for one am surprised that Janssen hasn’t kicked on after an impressive string of performances early on in the season. The problem with the 22-year-old is that his confidence is so low it is unbelievable. This is something that Mauricio Pochettino must work with the Dutchman on and show him his full backing to get him back to top form. Confidence is the only problem for Janssen. He has all of the skills to succeed to succeed in English football, and the quicker he can get over this mental block on the football pitch, the better.

3 Premier League Strikers Pochettino Must Target This Month

Vincent Janssen’s struggles at Spurs since his summer move have been there for all to see. The Dutchman has failed to score from open play in a Spurs shirt, and you have to question whether he can provide decent enough backup for Harry Kane. Here are three Premier League strikers Spurs should target to backup Kane in the second half of the season.

1) Jermain Defoe

We have already this transfer window seen bids rejected for Defoe, and Sunderland manager David Moyes say that the striker will not be leaving the club this month.

However, would a move back to Spurs be enough to tempt the Englishman back to White Hart Lane? Spurs certainly have the money to make the move happen, and getting a deal agreed in the next couple of weeks would still leave the North East struggles with a little bit of time to get in some reinforcements in this window.

Having previously been at Spurs, Defoe already knows the club inside out, and would need next to no time settling in. Harry Kane needs backup, and Tottenham would need it fast if there were to be an injury to Kane. Why we let Defoe go in the first place I do not know, but he still a consistent goalscorer, and he would be a perfect signing for Spurs in this January transfer window to compensate for Vincent Janssen’s striking struggles.