Why Tottenham Hotspur's XI against Liverpool clearly indicates Mauricio Pochettino's preference at left-back

Ben Davies has been performing well this season but now finds himself out of the team.

Tottenham Hotspur’s battling draw with Liverpool on Saturday gave perhaps the biggest indicator yet of Mauricio Pochettino's preference at left-back.

Ben Davies has been one fifth of a rear-guard that boasts the joint best defensive record in the league – conceding seven in nine games – for most of the season, but found himself amongst the substitutes for Liverpool’s visit to White Hart Lane.

Danny Rose was preferred instead and now looks like making the position his own after an injury hit start to the season.

There is the sense that Pochettino was waiting for an opportunity to bring in the Englishman and when none proved forthcoming in a Spurs shirt – owing to Davies’ solid but unspectacular displays – it took the international break for the Argentine to make his move.

Davies played twice as Wales secured their qualification to Euro 2016, while Rose remained at Hotspur Way - having been snubbed by England – and was able to work closely with the Spurs boss in preparation for the Liverpool clash.

His second Premier League appearance brought about his second clean sheet but it’s the pace and adventure he adds that is so vital in a Pochettino team.

The 4-2-3-1 formation with inverted wingers requires pacey attacking full-backs to provide the width and in Kyle Walker and Rose, Spurs have two of the best in the league.

Davies is a reliable option with excellent delivery from wide areas, but is not as suited to Pochettino’s system as Rose is, and he will now need to contend with Europa League and FA Cup duty for the time being.

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