Search

Inside Lane: Spurs must upgrade full-backs in the summer

12:18 16 April 2014

Danny Rose

Danny Rose

EMPICS Sport

Tottenham blogger Mike Williams believes that Spurs’ defensive problems are largely due to their full-backs, and that the club must make that area a priority this summer.

Kyle Naughton. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)Kyle Naughton. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Our up and down rollercoaster of a season continued on Saturday as we trailed 3-0 to a relatively poor West Brom side before coming back to draw.

Woefully poor defending has made us somewhat of a laughing stock at times for the rest of the division, as teams look like scoring every time they attack.

Our problems haven’t been helped by centre-backs being changed with regularity, but I believe the issue is more down to the personnel who are currently operating on our flanks in the full-back positions.

On the right-hand side we have been unlucky with the absence of Kyle Walker – who has been one of our most consistent players during this campaign – but even he still has a lot to learn.

The free-flowing attack-minded player is often the master of his own downfall as his lack of concentration often gets the better of him.

Despite that, Walker remains one of the most promising players around and his pelvic injury is not just a loss to us, but potentially England as well with the World Cup looming on the horizon.

Walker’s absence means the baton has been handed to the other Kyle (Naughton), but in truth it doesn’t seem that he is up to the challenge of being a regular in a team with top-four ambitions - he has been found out on more than one occasion.

On the opposite side, Spurs’ left-back problems seem to have returned in a big way. The laid-back figure of Benoit Assou-Ekotto was the answer for some but Andre Villas-Boas didn’t agree as he let the Cameroon international go to QPR on a season-long loan.

That decision meant one thing – Danny Rose was now Tottenham’s first-choice left-back, but is he really a left-back? Rose looked superb in a Sunderland shirt but I feel that was purely down to a decent player looking good in a poor side.

At times this season, Rose has looked more than capable but for the majority of the campaign, like Naughton, he has looked out of his depth.

We’ve tried with Rose, he’s had a good chance this term, but it just hasn’t worked. It’s an odd situation as, during his spell out injured – when Jan Vertonghen and Naughton were filling in and playing out of position - a returning Rose was deemed as our potential saviour. It’s an odd phenomenon that players often seem to get better when they’re out injured – or rather, their importance is exaggerated – and this was a classic case.

We have to learn our lessons from last summer and not make too many drastic changes in the upcoming transfer window, but a solid left-back must be the top priority – and we probably need better competition and cover for Walker as well.

Follow me on Twitter @mike191

Latest Sport Stories

Jan Vertonghen (right) in action against Brighton at White Hart Lane last night

Lifting the Capital One Cup could be the key to unlocking Tottenham’s potential, giving them a winning mentality and providing the spark that takes the club on to bigger things, according to Jan Vertonghen.

Yesterday, 09:00
Nils Mordt in action for Saracens. Pic by Christopher Lee/Getty Images

Nils Mordt is looking forward to taking to the field with Saracens’ young stars as they kick off their LV= Cup campaign with a London derby against Harlequins on Sunday.

Yesterday, 08:30
The jubilant Highgate Harriers squad

Highgate Harriers swept the board with a devastating display at the North of Thames cross-country championships in Kingsbury on Saturday.

Yesterday, 08:00
Ben Scott bats for Hampstead in the Middlesex County Cricket League. Pic: Max Flego

Hampstead CC’s former Middlesex wicketkeeper Ben Scott has been included in the MCC squad to tour Japan during the next 10 days.

Most read sport

Biffo and Bobo better stay away from the town of Vendargues this Halloween.

As a state of emergency is declared in Burkina Faso, what does the future hold for its president and people?

It might not be moving very fast but it’s still causing problems.

After staging an Ebola-themed night, a nightclub has been forced to make an apology after hundreds complained about the tasteless event.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Hampstead & Highgate Express e-edition today E-edition