What options does Andre Villas-Boas have? He has just suffered an absolutely humiliating defeat at the hands of Manchester City. He has been criticised by the media and fans alike for his defensive approach. Now the pressure is really on for him to turn it around.
Let’s take a look at what options he has within his squad and in terms of competitions to get the good feeling to return to White Hart Lane.
The blazingly obvious problem for Tottenham at present is the lack of goals that are being scored. This automatically takes us to the strikers in Robert Soldado and Jermain Defoe. Whilst most people agree that the system AVB has in place suits Soldado, the fact is he only has one goal from open play.
The chances are coming for the team but not necessarily for Soldado and not in the areas he is accustomed to. He seems most comfortable with a one or two touch finish so the service to him needs to be improved. The service provided comes either from crosses out wide or a clever pass through the middle.
This is where we encounter the problem. Out wide Andros Townsend can beat a man or two and get the team going but instead of getting a simple accurate cross in he loves shot from distance.
While this may be part of the Gareth Bale hangover, it can easily be rectified. Aaron Lennon has improved his crossing dramatically but we are not seeing it being utilised. So if both wide men and the occasional burst from Kyle Walker can produce cross that Soldado can attack, chances might be converted.
The other source of service is the through ball from the middle. This would be down to Lewis Holtby or anyone playing in that much craved ‘number 10 role’.
While Holtby has been able to produce against lesser opposition in the cup competitions he looks completely lost at sea in the Premier League. The main alternative is Christian Eriksen, who has all of the talent and creativity that Spurs lack of late.
AVB has been reluctant to integrate him as quickly as most would have hoped however and therefore we aren’t seeing his undeniable ability regularly. The obvious solution would be to play Eriksen and mould him into the playmaker.
One another glaring problem in the team is the lack of a left-back. Whilst Jan Vertonghen looks as though he is relatively capable in that position, he has come out and said the contrary. This has left the team praying for the return of Danny Rose, who in himself is not proven. A January acquisition is sorely needed.
Another method that AVB could use to salvage things could be to concentrate on the cups that Spurs are involved in - and win at least one if not two of them.
While the vast majority of Tottenham fans would vote in favour of Champions League football above winning the Capital One Cup, they would undoubtedly enjoy seeing their team win something.
This would galvanise the team and show that there is a plan and there is a future that AVB is striving for and he has the squad size to achieve it. So, lets wait and see it he does.
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