Using the way Pochettino’s Southampton side was set up and the few pre-season games we have already played, we can start to piece together an idea of how the new manager’s Tottenham team might look.
The starting XI might be something like:
Goalkeeper, Hugo Lloris, should fit well in the Pochettino system, sweeping up behind a high defensive line and distributing the ball accurately.
Vertonghen is a perfect match too. He is mobile, comfortable on the ball and a fairly decent stand in left back, so should be able to cover for Davies when he pushes forward.
Walker and Davies will provide the team’s width. Walker has been one of the unsung stars of the Spurs team over the years, it will be interesting to see how he adapts to a more attacking role.
Capoue will drop between the centre backs when the fullbacks push up. Despite a stop-start first season, he has the skills to both break up opposition attacks and start ours, crucial to the quick transitions Pochettino demands.
Paulinho will provide the drive in the centre as a box-to-box midfielder, helping to protect the defence but occasionally arriving late in the opposition penalty area to create overloads. If we do eventually sign Schneiderlin, this is where I see him slotting in, at the Brazilian’s expense.
Eriksen, our most creative player, can fill the number ten role, directing Spurs’ attacks from the centre.
Lamela is fast, can beat a man and loves to cut inside to shoot, so he should make the right midfield slot his own.
Soldado had a mediocre first season at White Hart Lane but has the passing skills to reinvent himself as the spearhead of the Spurs attack. He has already shown some excellent link up play with Lamela, on our North American tour.
The question marks represent the two positions where I feel we should sign new players – centre back and left midfield.
Apart from Vertonghen, I don’t think our other central defenders have made a strong enough case for inclusion. Dawson is not mobile enough, while Kaboul is error prone and often injured. Chiriches would be the best fit, he has the skills but at present seems a little raw and naive.
The left midfield spot could go to Andros Townsend but I am still unconvinced by him – his decision making is suspect. Maybe Pochettino can work his magic with the young winger or perhaps Jay Rodriguez will come in to fill this gap.
Football stuff at Amazon
|New home Spurs shirt||Spurs season review DVD||Football Manager 2014|
Do you agree with this team? What would your Spurs starting XI be? Please let us know your opinion in the comments section below.