View from the Opposition: Defence has given Tottenham Hotspur a solid base
PUBLISHED: 07:00 25 December 2015
Spurs fan and the EDP's community editor for Thetford, Andrew Fitchett, looks ahead to tomorrow's game at White Hart Lane.
Just how pleased are you with Tottenham’s season so far?
It’s been a fantastic start so far and topped my expectations. We didn’t bring in any huge names in the summer (despite spending nearly £60m) but the players we have brought in have been excellent. The most encouraging thing for us at the moment is that we aren’t as reliant on individuals – it’s the system and attitude which seems to be doing the business.
Which players have been the best performers?
Obviously the likes of Dele Alli, Eric Dier, Erik Lamela and Mousa Dembele have really stepped up this season, and Harry Kane has sparked again after a slow start, but it’s at the back where we’ve had the best performers. The centre-back pairing of Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld is as good as any in the league.
Which players have been disappointing?
Having ditched Adebayor in the summer, we’ve got a really hard-working, talented bunch of players at the club and it seems harsh to single anyone out. Summer signings Kieran Trippier and Kevin Wimmer haven’t done much yet, but haven’t had a chance.
Do you feel Mauricio Pochettino, pictured, is making good progress?
Very much so. The side he picked up lacked purpose and any kind of cohesive approach, and he’s moulded them into a hard-working, resilient bunch who are the fittest team in the league. I wouldn’t be shocked to see bigger European clubs sniffing around in the summer.
Is a title challenge possible this season?
Not quite. It’s a bonkers Premier League season, for sure, but it would take something special for us to challenge City and Arsenal. Fourth place is very realistic though, especially with Chelsea floundering and Liverpool stuttering.
Just how good is former Canaries loanee Harry Kane now?
He’s very good. We’ve been lucky to have some world class players at the Lane in the last few years – Bale, Modric, Berbatov – and he’s not quite at that level, but he’s something special. It says something that if he were to get injured, our season could fall apart. And yes – he’s been as much of a surprise to Spurs fans as Norwich fans!
Does Norwich’s win at Man Utd make you nervous?
It doesn’t make me nervous but I’m sure it will give their players confidence. In the past, Spurs were the sort of charitable side that would give visiting sides a win if they were in desperate need of one, but we seem to have shaken that this season – bar the Newcastle result two weeks ago.
Which of City’s players are you most wary of?
Robbie Brady has really impressed me this season. He’s got a lot of quality and seems intelligent with it. If you get him on the ball against Kyle Walker, who can occasionally go to sleep, you could have some joy.
Do you have fond memories of clashes with Norwich?
Norwich were the first side I saw play at White Hart Lane in 1993 – this time it was the day after Boxing Day, and you turned us over 3-1. We’ve since had a decent record in what are usually entertaining games. Gareth Bale’s goal in the game at Carrow Road two years ago springs to mind as a highlight for us.
And finally, what is your prediction?
The worst thing that could have happened for Norwich was for us to lose to Newcastle two weeks ago. We had a reaction against Southampton last week, and the players will want to bounce back at home too. I fancy Spurs to win 2-0.
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