Spurs set to make huge error with defensive departure

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Tottenham Hotspur are at a low ebb.

Spurs lost 3-1 to Sheffield United on Thursday in a game that marked out just how bad their defensive woes are.

The Blades scored three remarkably simple goals, unpicking Spurs’ backline repeatedly.

Jose Mourinho began the game with a backline of Serge Aurier, Davinson Sanchez, Eric Dier, and Ben Davies, with Hugo Lloris in goal.

That looks all the more ridiculous when both Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld were fit enough to play and began the game on the bench. 

It is likely, then, that Vertonghen will be leaving this summer, as his contract expires.

He has struggled for minutes thus far this season, particularly under Jose Mourinho; he has been on the bench three times in their last five games and played just nine minutes at Bramall Lane, replacing Davies as a late substitute. One has to wonder what the point of that change was.

Now, though, his potential exit is closing in.

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Sport Witness quotes journalist Ertan Suzgun, who reports that Besiktas are currently in talks with Vertonghen as the summer transfer window looms.

The club’s manager, Sergen Yalcin, is said to be keen on securing the signature of the Belgium international, and Besiktas are going to attempt to convince him to move to Turkey.

He is said to be the club’s first-choice defensive target.

GIVEMESPORT’S Harry Sherlock says…

This feels more and more like a mistake.

Vertonghen is ageing, of course, and he is 33 but he cannot make their defence any worse.

Spurs have kept just one clean sheet in 11 games and the partnership of Sanchez and Dier really isn’t working.

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Bringing Vertonghen back into the fold would be a good option as the season progresses and one has to question whether there would be logic in giving him a new contract.

It would make a lot more sense than allowing him to move to Besiktas for nothing, but Mourinho may have already burned the bridge.

He has not given Vertonghen any meaningful playing time since the resumption of proceedings and that may well come back to bite him.

Letting him leave is an error.

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