With the furore over the failed move for Saido Berahino this summer, it has been forgotten that Tottenham also missed out on securing a defensive midfielder in the transfer window.
One player they should have targeted was Alexandre Song, after he was deemed surplus to requirements at Barcelona following his successful spell at West Ham last season. He has since returned to Upton Park on loan, with a cheap move looking likely next summer.
Primarily the defensive midfielder is in there to protect the defence and recover the ball, and on this regard Song was way ahead of both Bentaleb and Mason, recovering the ball 250 times compared their scores of 168 and 124.
He also came out on top when it come to winning possession in the midfield third, doing this 146 times last season compared to the scores of 95 for Bentaleb and 71 for Mason.
|Season||Pass Success Percentage||Outfielder Block||Ball Recovery||Poss Won Mid 3rd||Poss Won Def 3rd||Tackle Success Percentage|
He enjoyed a similar dominance in winning the ball back in the defensive third as well, with a tally of 97 compared to 68 for Bentaleb and 50 for Mason.
When it comes to tackling he shared a success rate of 76% with Bentaleb, but bettered Mason, whose score was 72%. He also had more outfielder blocks than Mason, although Bentaleb comes out on top in the trio in this regard.
In fact, the only area Song fell short in was his passing, with him having a pass success rate of 76%, which compares poorly to Mason’s tally of 83% and Bentaleb’s score of 86%.
However, it is a clear win for Song in the more defensive aspects, highlighting why Spurs may have been foolish not to challenge West Ham more seriously for his signature this summer.