With Roberto Soldado failing to live up to his potential, a designated playmaker to create chances for the Spaniard centrally is needed.
Tottenham’s search for a high-quality striker to fire them back into the top four seemingly came to an end in the summer with the signing of Roberto Soldado.
The Spain international has moved to White Hart Lane with a considerable reputation and a track record of scoring consistently in his homeland.
However, the ex-Valencia hitman has found the going tough in Andre Villas-Boas’ team, with chances to hit the net in open play few and far between.
In Villas-Boas’ 4-2-3-1 system, Lewis Holtby has been deployed of late in the number ten role as the side’s chief schemer.
The Germany international adds skill and industry to the Spurs attack, but the case for Christian Eriksen to be reintroduced could well help Soldado start to get more chances to score.
In ten games, Tottenham have only been caught offside nine times – the fewest in the Premier League to date. This shows that Soldado has seldomly been playing on the shoulder of his opposite numbers or looking to get the ball in behind defences.
Most of Spurs’ play has been in front of opposition rearguards, with Aaron Lennon and Andros Townsend cutting off their wings to get involved centrally.
Soldado has looked to drop deep to get involved in his side’s possession play, and has not looked for the ball in behind opposition defences.
However, if Eriksen was reintroduced to the side, the Dane has the vision and range of passing to be the focal point of the team’s attacking play, and play probing throughballs for Soldado to latch onto.
This would give Spurs a more varied form of attack, and allow Soldado to make runs behind opposition defences.
Holtby has been playing well, but Eriksen’s range of passing could well be the incisive edge to unleash Soldado and break down stubborn opposition.
image: © Кирилл Крыжановский