Will 'on fire, amazing' Paulinho be the difference maker vs Chelsea?

One Brazilian has hailed another as Spurs' summer signing receives high praise for his scintillating start in English football.

One of the Premier League's hottest performers in the season to date is a player who is unaccustomed to the culture of English football, Paulinho, a 25-year-old box-to-box midfielder who has made an instant impact at Tottenham Hotspur.

Transferred from Corinthians early in the summer for a then club record purchase of £17m, Paulinho has been an ever-present in manager Andre Villas-Boas' selection and his reliability and quality have been fundamental in Tottenham's early season push toward the summit of the division.

Having featured in all available minutes of Premier League duty to date, 450, Paulinho has had an impact on every area of the park: one goal, one assist, seven chances created, 13 shots on goal (six on target), 11 tackles (eight won), 28 duels won, two clearances, one block, ten interceptions and 284 passes with an accuracy of 88%.

The Brazil international, capped 20 times, also got himself on the score-sheet in the League Cup and in the Europa League. It is form that has club and country team-mate Sandro purring: 'He's amazing… he’s on fire at the moment! I’m so glad for him and everyone enjoyed this moment,' the midfielder told the club's official website.

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It is a sentiment echoed by club legend Gary Lineker, an FA Cup winner in 1991: 'Paulinho has been excellent at Tottenham,' he enthused in the latest edition of Sport.

While his overall statistics for the season make for impressive reading, it is his most recent performances that have punctuated his form as the accolade magnet scored in both of the club's most recent outings: the 4-0 slaughtering of Aston Villa and the last minute 1-0 edging of Cardiff City.

At White Hart Lane, Tottenham are undefeated in the Premier League this season and brag a goal-line impossible to penetrate. Chelsea's away form, in contrast, is sub-par as the side are yet to win… are yet to score even, with a draw and a loss on their ledger.

It may well be prudent to assume that, if Spurs are to defeat Chelsea on Saturday lunch-time, then Paulinho will be one of the game's most influential figures.  Tottenham are not just going for the win, though… just ask Sandro: 'We have to play like we played at Villa. Let's make this a big win!'

image: © visualkreator

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