There’s a lot to be said about this Tottenham squad. There are a lot of good and not so good players in the mix all together. I’m just gonna do a run down on what I think should be the starting 11 look at some of the other players in the squad and put forward my opinion on what they’re abilities are like and if we could make any better signings to improve the team. Ok here we go…
GK- Brad Friedel
As any fan of the Premiership would tell you Friedel is one of the best goalkeepers the division has seen. His longevity in the league and the fact he has played every game for the last 7 seasons means his abilities can’t be doubted. He is a great shot stopper who could have been signed instead of Edwin Van der Sar 4 years ago to play for Man Utd. He deserves a lot more honours than he holds. But he is 41 approaching 42; and even though he is a great shot stopper still you have to ask if his best days are behind him. With the squad cull this is being carried out is it time to replace him.
When I heard the rumours of us signing Hugo Lloris for £12 million I got goose bumps. He is an established international goalkeeper, one of the best in Europe easily and you can’t argue with the price. For an international goalie it’s cheap (for modern football) considering Man Utd spent 0ver £18 million on De Gea and Chelsea spent about £24 million on Cech. If anyone will be able to replace Brad then Lloris is definitely the man to do it.
RB- Kyle Walker
Ever since Walker went on loan to Aston Villa in January in the 2010/ 2011 season you could tell he was special. The way he played with confidence and composure showed ability beyond his 20 years. After a good spell on loan at QPR and Villa he came back to Spurs and ever since has made the right back position his own. With blistering pace and the stamina to get back he is a (sorry for the Arsenal reference) a right sided Ashley Cole. He has the ability to be the best right back in the world. He’s already shown this by being the 1st choice right back for England for the Euro’s ahead of Glen Johnson and Micah Richards but was kept out by injury. After winning Young Player of the Year (ahead of Bale and Aguero) you can’t help but see bright things in this guy’s future.
CB- Michael Dawson (C)
Signed as a little know player along with Andy Reid from Notts Forrest 7 years ago he is a hit with fans. I have no idea why AVB would want to sell this man. He’s a fantastic captain who will put his body on the line for his team to get the result. This has led to some injuries but his commitment to the game and club is beyond question and he the ability to back up his passion. He is a throwback to an older generation of English defenders and we are lucky to have him at the club.
CB- Jan Vertonghan
Early signs indicate Jan is a very good player, a moderate fee has meant that there is some expectation of the 24 year old man and he looks to live up to the hype. A similar mould to Dawson for committing his body to the team but with a more graceful and fluid footballing style means he could play as a centre midfielder. I look forward to seeing how he develops and think he could be a real asset to the team.
LB- Beniot Assou- Ekotto
In all honesty I cannot stand Ekotto; whenever I watch him I can see a catalogue of mistakes being made consistently throughout the match almost every week. Yet he is a regular for the team and can sometimes even produce special moments. But for me they are too few and far between and I think he costs the team too much.
Realistically there are players who we could get to replace him. There was talk of Leighton Baines going to Man Utd for £12 million which I would be happy to see Spurs spend on him to replace Ekotto. Or Aly Cisshoko from France for around £10 million. Just replace Ekotto basically, for me he is the weakest player in the team and we need to sell him ASAP!
DM- Scott Parker
Another class English player, great cheap signing by Harry who saw him slotting in to the team which he has done brilliantly. His hard work and conviction could be seen all of last season and earnt him a trip to the Euro’s with England. His discipline and style of play suites the defence role in midfield and he can be the base that we need to build our attacks from.
CM- Rafael Van der Vaart
Further proof of Harry’s transfer prowess for a mere £8 million Vaart has contributed over two dozen goals and more assists over the last 2 years. Elegant play and the desire to win means that this player can do some devastating things. Although only good for 60 to 75 minutes per game in that time he can win games for Spurs. He may be on AVB hit list but if he stays he will be sure to have another successful season.
CM- Gylif Sigurdsson
Stolen from under the nose of Brendan Rodgers Sigurdsson had a solid 6 month loan deal at Swansea last season. Scoring 9 goals in 17 games and creating goals from set pieces and open play alike this 22 year old is a real creative force and, if used correctly, he could become one of the top midfielders in the Premiership with his pin point passing and goal scoring abilities.
RM- Aaron Lennon
After signing for Spurs in 2005 for £500k as a backup to Wayne Routledge, Lennon had to wait until an injury to Routledge gave him a start in the first team. As a little known player his pace blew away any defender in front of him and he’s been the first choice ever since. Coupled with Kyle Walker the two players give us one of the quickest right flanks in the world. The link up and creativity of both means goals can be created from the right and few teams can deal with them. But one criticism is the lack of goals from Lennon, scoring about 1 goal per 10 games, but with the danger he presents he is fine player for Spurs and England.
LM- Gareth Bale
After signing for £5 million Spurs played 40 or so games of not winning whenever Bale started or came on as a substitute. But then one day that all changed, shortly after joining Spurs Harry Redknapp decided to try Bale as a left midfielder instead of a left back due to his tendancy to get forward with pace and power, and his consistency at producing precise crosses whilst running at full pace. He is now considered to be one of the best attacking midfielders in the world. The pinnacle of his career so far has to be when he destroyed Maicon (one of the most regarded right backs in the world) in Tottenham’s 4-3 champions league defeat, scoring all 3 goals for Spurs. His stamina and speed causes defences problems for the whole 90 minutes, and his development of his game to cut inside has meant he was Tottenham’s 2nd top scorer last season even though he hasn’t scored since January. And still only 22 and after just signing a new contract all Spurs fans hope to see him at White Hart Lane for years to come.
ST- Emmanuel Adeybayor
He had a good solid season last year; he was the club’s top goal scorer and also had the highest number of assists. So overall had a part to play in about 25-30 goals last year which isn’t bad. Now he’s joined us permanently I think all Tottenham fans want him to keep that hunger and drive that the team need in that final third.
Caulker looks a good young player and could be the one to replace the great Leady King. Young, tall, strong, and with 26 appearances on loan at Swansea last year he definitely impressed. Hopefully this is the start of a shining career and he will build on the ability he has to be one of the top defenders to be produced by Spurs
A very good player on his day; a lot more consistent than when he first signed as a 21 year old he has definitely matured as he’s spent longer at the club. This has left us with a good (still young) player who can cover as a centre back or a right back meaning he is a fine choice to have on the bench. His areal ability and powerful shot also means he can be a source of goals from set pieces and open play.
After some first team exposure last season he’s starting to show that he could have some potential in the second half of last year and in the Olympics. Good defensively and able to run forward with the ball, passes ok; he could be good. I do have questions over his discipline, he seems to have a lot of bookings and can lose his temper at any moment and get dismissed.
The next Michael Carrick? Maybe. I think he could be better; he shows the ability to pass and run like a true centre midfielder should. He has some fairly good vision and can create some good following movement like all Tottenham fans love to see. We’ll have to see this season if he can really make an impression on the team.
Defoe’s had a couple of stints at Spurs. He’s always been a natural goal scorer but has never really been the main man up front. As a backup striker though he’s solid, has a nice solid strike, pace and can work his way around players with his low centre of gravity and strength. He can find space and let off his deadly shot. Even though he has signed a new contract there is a good chance he could soon be third choice with talk about Remy, Leandro Daimio and others that could take Defoe’s place.