Redknapp: Two years after leaving Spurs, Steven Caulker has taken a backwards step

Steven Caulker

Steven Caulker was sold by Tottenham Hotspur to Cardiff two years ago. Now at QPR, he has been accused of going backwards in terms of his performances. Is this true?

QPR defender Steven Caulker has been singled out by pundit Jamie Redknapp for his 'poor' display against Hull City.

The centre-back signed from Cardiff City in the summer, who he had joined a year earlier from Tottenham Hotspur.

The defender's sale was surprising at the time, having impressed on loan at Swansea City two years earlier, and seen as a potential replacement at Spurs for former captain Ledley King.

Now facing potential successive relegations with QPR in the midst of a survival battle, Caulker has been called out by Redknapp for his displays.

He told The Mail: "I’m not sure what’s happened to Steven Caulker. It’s been more than two years since he scored on his England debut and back then he looked like one of the country’s brightest youngsters.

"He was poor in the build-up for Hull’s goals on Saturday. Now he needs to do better and start learning quickly."

Here is a statistical overview of how Caulker's performances compare over the past four seasons:

  TeamSeasonTackles won per gameInterceptions won per gameShots Blocked per gameErrors Leading To GoalsAerial Duels won per gameAppearances
Steven Caulker Swansea 2011-2012 0.92 1.04 1.04 0 1.69 26
Steven Caulker Tottenham 2012-2013 0.83 1.17 0.44 2 2.22 18
Steven Caulker Cardiff 2013-2014 0.82 1.24 1.55 0 3.79 38
Steven Caulker QPR 2014-2015 0.71 2 1.04 0 3.71 24

While the 23-year-old's average number of tackles won per game has decreased consecutively over the past four seasons, for QPR he has posted his best numbers in terms of interceptions won, and is only 0.08 per game off equalling his highest figure in terms of aerial duels won.

It's also worth noting he has not made what Opta consider a direct error leading to a goal for two seasons.

What is apparent however is that playing for four different clubs in as many seasons is unlikely to have been helpful to his career in terms of getting any consistency. At QPR he has had a number of defensive partners this campaign too, unable to form a consistent pairing.

At 23 there is still time for him to recapture the form which saw him previously called up for England, but playing in a team at the bottom of the table rather than European place battling Tottenham puts him under more pressure on the pitch, with individual recognition also therefore fading.

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