Five things we learned about Tottenham over the weekend

Tottenham Huddle V Arsenal

Andre Villas-Boas’ men were beaten 1-0 by their north London rivals Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

Tottenham crashed to their first defeat of the new season, as they were edged out by Arsenal in the north London derby at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

A first-half Olivier Giroud goal proved the difference, with a new-look Spurs team failing in their late attempts to get an equaliser.

Here are five things that became apparent about the Tottenham team in the defeat.

Christian Eriksen needed in the starting XI

Tottenham’s seventh major signing of the summer has been confirmed as the acquisition of Christian Eriksen from Ajax. The Denmark international did not play against Arsenal due to signing only hours before the game, but Villas-Boas will be keen to introduce the Scandinavian sooner rather than later.

Roberto Soldado was very isolated in Spurs’ defeat and needed a player to bridge the gap between the side’s attack and midfield. Eriksen will play in the number ten role when selected and this will give support to the Spaniard and add a much-needed hit of creativity to Spurs’ attack.

End product still missing

Tottenham had relative joy down Arsenal’s flanks, with full-backs Kyle Walker and Danny Rose supporting Andros Townsend and Nacer Chadli.

Despite getting into some excellent positions, all four were guilty of a poor final ball. Soldado is screaming out for some top-drawer service, but this was not provided by Tottenham’s wide players on Sunday.

Rose’s positional sense found out

For all the attacking benefits of having Danny Rose in the Spurs team at left-back, the youngster’s lack of experience and defensive frailties became apparent in the defeat.

The former Leeds man was guilty of ball watching in the build up to Arsenal’s goal, with the hosts getting in behind Rose much too easily.

Lloris a top-drawer stopper

Hugo Lloris built on an excellent start to the season with another strong performance at the Emirates. The France international has proved himself as a safe pair of hands at the back for Spurs.

Not only is the former Lyon man an excellent shot-stopper, his ability to command his penalty area and sweep up in front of his defence is second to none in the Premier League.

The gap between Arsenal and Tottenham is closing

The last two times that the sides have met at the Emirates Arsenal have cruised to 5-2 victories. There was never any danger of this happening on Sunday.

Tottenham fans can be confident that this may well be the season where they can finish higher than Arsenal and qualify for the Champions League. The teams are very well-matched and Spurs are now a good match for their cross-town rivals.

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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