Spurs’ talisman Harry Kane won’t be taking any part in tomorrow’s big game against Manchester United. This is a blow in many sense as this game could potentially decide which team runs City close in the title race. Now, Pochettino has a dilemma as to how he would lineup his team at Old Trafford. He has two distinct choices to do it. Let’s take a look at the options Argentine has in his locker in terms of strikers.
Kane’s absence could open gate for Llorente: –
With Vincent Janssen struggling when given opportunities last season in the absence of Kane, Spurs always wanted a backup this summer. They took their time and in the end defeated Chelsea to get Fernando Llorente from Swansea. It was a wise move just because the Spaniard has a Premier League scoring experience with the Swans last season. He played a big part in their relegation survival.
Being a backup striker for Harry Kane is a tough job for anyone. The Englishman hardly misses games and currently isn’t missing on scoring goals either. So, the manager always has no choice but to start with him and keep his backup for the cup games. It can be frustrating for a player like Llorente, who has had a good career in various clubs.
But, now, this is the chance for him to get into the manager’s regular plans. In fairness, he did well when Pochettino opted to play a 3-5-2 formation against Real Madrid at Bernabeu. The main disadvantage of his game is he gets isolated when the team is defending. He doesn’t have the work-rate or speed as that of Kane or Alli of that matter.
So, if the manager decides to play him, the 3-5-2 formation of two strikers would suit his way of playing more. In that case, the layoffs and flick-ons can be dangerous play to the opposition.
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Pochettino could opt for Son: –
This might sound a bit out of order, but Pochettino has used South Korean Son Heung-Min to lead the line few times last season. He can give that flexibility in the front-line along with the likes of Alli and Eriksen. We all know United’s defence and midfield is a bit twitchy at the moment with notable absentees, especially in the midfield. So, if Pochettino wants to play in a free-flowing way, he can opt for a Son, Alli and Eriksen front three.
The one thing guaranteed with the South Korean is the work-rate off the ball. He has loads of pace and directness in his game along with energy to close down opposition build-ups. Jose Mourinho will have a different sort of problem to deal if he faces him from the first whistle.
Overall, one can say that Tottenham will not be backing down from the challenge even if their main man is injured. Pochettino has instilled a winning mentality within this team and they still have enough quality to surpass United’s defence and beat them. The task obviously, is bigger and tougher for the remaining men to make sure that Kane’s absence doesn’t have a negative impact on them. They have to show that this team does not rely upon one player.