Tottenham's outstanding strength in depth on show in cup win

The north Londoners recorded an impressive 4-0 away win at Aston Villa on Tuesday night, despite resting the majority of their big names.

Tottenham’s strong early season form continued on Tuesday night, as the north London side progressed to the fourth round of the Capital One Cup with a 4-0 win over Aston Villa.

Given that the fixture at Villa Park was the third in six days for Andre Villas-Boas’ men, the nature of the win and the strength of the team that took the field was highly impressive.

Of the starting XI, in all likelihood only Jan Vertonghen, Paulinho and Kyle Walker are assured a starting berth against Chelsea at the weekend, with Sandro and Erik Lamela potentially working their way into the side.

Despite the remainder being made up of fringe players, nine of the starting side were internationals, with three more coming off the bench.

Villas-Boas gave a full debut to his new central defender Vlad Chiriches, who will offer competition for places for Vertonghen, Michael Dawson and Younes Kaboul.

In midfield Sandro got another 90 minutes under his belt to aid his recovery from serious injury, and will now battle it out with Paulinho, Mousa Dembele and Etienne Capoue for starting places in the boiler room.

Lewis Holtby had arguably his best performance in a Tottenham shirt, and has taken every chance he has been given this season and impressed. He is a very able replacement for first-choice number ten Christian Eriksen, and Villas-Boas may well be considering ways to get the Germany international into his starting XI alongside the Dane.

Erik Lamela continued his adjustment to life in England and showed a couple of breathtaking touches on the ball – Villas-Boas now has a decision to make on the right flank – Lamela or Andros Townsend.

Jermain Defoe continued his fine form with two more well-taken goals and he is doing his bit to add to Tottenham’s strength in depth. Although Roberto Soldado will most likely start against Chelsea, the England international has done nothing wrong and will feature at some point against Jose Mourinho’s men.

With Zeki Fryers and Harry Kane also putting in solid performances to aid their development, Tottenham’s contingent looks as strong now as it has done in the recent memory.

With Europa League football, domestic cups and a frenetic Premier League fixture list, Villas-Boas’ rotation of his massively talented squad will be key. If he can get selection right, Tottenham certainly have the strength in depth to push to achieve their objectives this season.

image: © hollidaypics

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