Toby Alderweireld signing has completed Tottenham's defence

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In the last eight years, Tottenham have had some very good defenders. Think of Ledley King, Michael Dawson, Jonathan Woodgate, Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Kyle Walker in the season of 2011/12 and Jan Vertonghen in 2012/13.

It has always been said that Tottenham were one top-class striker off breaking into the top four. They've got that now in the form of Harry Kane.

But now it's all about tightening up a defence who leaked the most goals out of the top 13 clubs in the Premier League last season.


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There were three problems with their defence last season.

1. No partnerships or defensive organisation

The fact that the right-back kept changing because of injuries and no defender was able to hold their place down alongside Vertonghen are the two reasons why Tottenham's defence didn't work as a unit.

The best three defences in the league last season: Chelsea, Southampton and Arsenal, all had consistent back fours where an almost identical back line was selected week in week out. This is most likely down to the management of the defence, and is something that surely needs to be sorted out.

2. No defensive midfielder

At the start of the season it was Watford's new signing Etienne Capoue who would play every game sitting in front of the back line, but attitude problems led to a fall out with Mauricio Pochettino which meant that he didn't feature in a match-day squad in any competition after January 24.

The two players who played the most games in Tottenham's central midfield were Nabil Bentaleb and Ryan Mason.

Bentaleb was often handed the responsibility to sit back more, but that didn't necessarily work as he wasn't disciplined enough and ventured forward too often. That's not so say he didn't have a great season where lots of progress was made.

3. Not enough competition

The two positions in the defence that this doesn't apply to are left-back and right centre-back. The signing of Ben Davies for an undisclosed fee in 2014, proved to do the world of good for Danny Rose whose consistency led to him being selected for two England squads.

However, unluckily for him, injury prevented him from making his first cap for the senior side. But two players who quite evidently felt that their positions were secured in the starting eleven were Jan Vertonghen and Kyle Walker.

Even though the latter suffered from injury for the majority of the campaign, he still consistently under-performed but unfortunately there was no one better to come in. Despite the fact that DeAndre Yedlin was called back prematurely from Seattle Sounders, he wasn't deemed to be at the sufficient level of Tottenham Hotspur's defence to start a game even though Kyle Walker was injured from the beginning of April.

Although Vertonghen was relatively consistent, he played as if there was no pressure on him which far from enhances a player's performance. 

What the summer additions have provided...

Vertonghen should now finally be feeling the heat as his position could be under threat for the first time since he joined from Ajax in 2012. The signing of left-footed Kevin Wimmer from German club Cologne for £4.3 million will surely provide some competition for the Belgian international.

Although not the most glamorous, the signing of Kieran Trippier from relegated side Burnley for £3.5 million is very wise. With Yedlin likely to go out on loan to gain some regular Premier League experience, a right-back was a necessity if Spurs want to get the most out of the 2011/12 PFA Young Player of the Year, Kyle Walker.

Perhaps the highest profile signing of the season so far for the north London club is Toby Alderweireld from Atletico Madrid. The Belgian centre-half impressed last season alongside Jose Fonte in a Southampton side who achieved the second best defence in the Premier League.

The signing of Alderweireld will surely wake up the likes of Fazio and Dier who, apart from some good runs of form from the latter, were less than convincing in their first seasons in England's top flight.

Defence... Check

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Mauricio Pochettino
Ledley King
Jan Vertonghen
Kyle Walker
Tottenham Hotspur
Danny Rose

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