Tottenham Hotspur’s defence has come in for plenty of criticism from their own fans in recent times, with summer signing Federico Fazio struggling to adapt – and stay on the pitch – while surprise captain Younes Kaboul is seemingly faltering under the extra burden, his performances anything but inspiring.
Add to that the fact Tottenham fans are still smarting from the signing of Vlad Chriches and the departure of Michael Dawson and one wonders if there is any hope for Mauricio Pochettino’s back-line.
Few would disagree that Jan Vertonghen should occupy one of the two centre-back positions, with some suggesting Eric Dier should take the other. But there is an alternative option and that is to give Benjamin Stambouli a run in defence.
When the Frenchman arrived at White Hart Lane in the summer those in the know hailed his capture. But up to now the 24-year-old has played just 21 minutes of Premier League football, overlooked in midfield in favour of Etienne Capoue and Ryan Mason.
But as good as Stambouli is as a defensive midfielder – and he is good – he also has a history of playing as a centre-back.
In fact that was the position in which he first broke into the Montpellier side, later featuring all across the back-line before making the midfield role his own.
It was not the reason he was brought to Tottenham, and it is unlikely to be his preferred option, but considering how little he has featured so far any chance is likely to be seized.
And let’s face it, would Stambouli really do any worse than Fazio or Kaboul? Surely, given the player’s history, it is worth a try.