Guest Post for FantasyYIRMA.com
Another weekend passes by and once again Andre Villas-Boas found himself under huge pressure after watching his Tottenham side go down 5-0 to Liverpool. Unfortunately for the Spurs boss, this proved to be the last straw, and the football betting markets were proved right when he was sacked on Monday morning.
After being demolished 6-0 at Manchester City last month, a draw against Manchester United and wins over Fulham and Sunderland had made it look as if Spurs had turned the corner in their chase for a top four spot. However, they were back to being at their very worst against the Reds on Sunday, being easily opened up by a Liverpool team who were without captain Steven Gerrard. Of course the Lilywhites also had their injury problems, most notably in defence where Jan Vertonghen, Younes Kaboul and Vlad Chiriches were all unavailable.
It was further forward where Tottenham struggled again though, as they failed to feed the ball to the lone striker who this time around was Roberto Soldado, while despite the recent good form of Lewis Holtby, Paulinho was given the nod in the number 10 role but couldn’t produce the goods.
The Brazilian was eventually sent off in the second half for a foul on Luis Suarez but he undoubtedly looked noticeably more comfortable when moved back into his more familiar deeper role after Sandro went off in the first half.
Although he is yet to reach his best form, Paulinho has probably been the most successful buy of the numerous new faces that arrived at White Hart Lane in the summer, while some have been particularly poor.
Once again, Spurs’ player of the season Andros Townsend was left on the bench, with Nacer Chadli being given the nod on the left, but he didn’t get the better of Glen Johnson once, failing to create any real chances for the frustrated Soldado.
The Spanish striker had been one of the pre-season favourites to finish top scorer and is undoubtedly one of the best poachers in world football but under AVB simply wasn’t being given the opportunities to prove his class. This is partly down to the injury to Christian Eriksen, but also due to poor form of record signing Erik Lamela, whose sluggishness in adapting to the pace of Premier League has been extremely noticeable, while his attitude has also been questioned with a January loan move already being touted.
It could be argued that the main problem facing Spurs under AVB was his insistence on regularly rotating his troops, a ploy used by almost all managers with aspirations of winning the Premier League.
The new Spurs boss, however, whoever he happens to be, needs to see his team gel in every area of the pitch. That is challenge one, of a very, very long list of challenges at White Hart Lane.
About the Author
Joe is a freelance sports journalist and staff writer for FC Copenhagen. As a Leeds United season ticket holder for nine years in his youth, he’s seen the best and worst English football has to offer. A frequent fantasy football player, you may (or most probably may not) have seen his team Borussia Teeth languishing at the foot of many a league table. That trend is set to continue.