Spurs suffered a 3-2 defeat at Anfield last night, but should be heartened by the side’s display on Merseyside.
The race for a top-four finish took another twist last night as Liverpool got themselves thoroughly back in the mix with a 3-2 victory over Tottenham.
Having come back from a goal down on two occasions, Spurs will be frustrated to leave Anfield empty-handed, with much-maligned substitute Mario Balotelli netting the winner close to full-time.
Despite defeat, the manner of the Spurs performance and the display of a number of the players should be heartening for Mauricio Pochettino and his men.
Eric Dier looking assured and adding pace to Spurs’ defence
Jan Vertonghen and Federico Fazio were seemingly Pochettino’s first-choice pairing at centre-half earlier in the season, but Eric Dier has thrived since being given a chance in the side recently.
The young English defender put in another relatively assured performance last night in a pressurised environment, making some impressive last-ditch tackles to prevent shots on goal and looking comfortable in possession also.
However, the most positive aspect of Dier’s presence in the Spurs backline is the added pace he offers compared to the laboured Fazio, with the former Sporting Lisbon man looking like someone that can develop into a top player at White Hart Lane.
Erik Lamela getting to grips with English football
Of last summer’s seven signings, Erik Lamela was arguably the biggest disappointment last term as he struggled for fitness and to acclimatise to English football.
However, this season with a full bill of health and his compatriot as manager, the former Roma man has looked more comfortable and dangerous in the team.
The South American has seemingly toughened up and put in a hard-working and determined display at Anfield last night.
With a clever pass to set up Harry Kane’s goal an insight into his creativity also, Lamela will continue to get better the more he plays.
Playing football the Spurs way
As Eric Dier slung a long ball aimlessly forward in the first half, the television camera swung to Pochettino who urged his young defender to keep the ball on the deck and be brave in possession.
Throughout the game Spurs looked to keep possession and play out from the back, which resulted in some clever attacking from the visitors.
Nabil Bentaleb and Ryan Mason were guilty of some wayward passing in the first half, but these young stars are still developing as players at Premier League level.
With Pochettino’s commitment to possession-based football and keeping the ball on the deck, Tottenham fans looks set to witness more positive and expansive football as the team grows under his stewardship.