Can Spurs Go Marching On
What a great couple of weeks it's been for Tottenham. When Mauricio Pochettino's side drew back to back games with Southampton and League Two Newport County, it only cranked up the pressure on Spurs. They were heading into a crucial time of the season coming off the back of two disappointing results. However their response has been emphatic. They have beaten Manchester United, Arsenal and Newport and drawn at Liverpool and Juventus.
Since Pochettino took over in 2014, Spurs have finished fifth, third and second in the Premier League. However some people are quick to point out that they are yet to win any silverware under the Argentine. Are Spurs really expected to be finishing ahead of both Manchester clubs, Chelsea, Liverpool or Arsenal? They don't pay the same wages as any of those clubs so they have to approach the transfer market with a different strategy and depend on the quality of their coaching.
This season they've shown that they can compete with the big boys in the Champions League and what was so impressive about last night was their response to a shocking start. 2-0 down after nine minutes away to Juventus who had only conceded one goal in their previous 16 games and zero in 2018. Harry Kane bagged his 33rd goal of the season while Mousa Dembele and Christian Eriksen were excellent. Sure you could argue it should have been 3-1 at half time but there's no doubt Spurs were the better team over the 90 minutes.
They're the first team to cancel out a two-goal deficit away to the Juve since the Italian champions moved to their new stadium in 2011. Pochettino made a couple of big calls with his team selection. Serge Aurier got the nod over Kieran Trippier but the French defender had an uncomfortable night in Turin and will miss the return leg at Wembley in three weeks due to suspension. Erik Lamela was preferred to Son Heing-Min in attack which was a bit of a surprise given how well Son has been playing. Victor Wanyama had to look on from the bench yet again as Eric Dier was given a start in central midfield. Dier is a useful player to have in the squad but Wanyama can count himself unluckly to get left out.
At least now Pochettino has options in different positions and what's even more encouraging is that his side always has a stronger second half of the season. They may not go all the way in the Champions League but they're in the driving seat to get into the quarter finals and with a trip to Rochdale to come at the weekend, the FA Cup represents a decent opportunity to get their hands on a trophy.