Mauricio Pochettino was so unamused by the manner of his side’s defeat to Newcastle last time out that he called into question the mentality of his Tottenham players.
As Brighton pay Spurs a visit next in the Capital One Cup, the Argentine gets the perfect chance to further test the mettle of some perceived weak links, as he will surely be plotting some changes in personnel come January.
Tottenham are still firm 9/20 favourites to win the match against a Seagulls side pecking around for some form, but here are five players we feel are walking a White Hart Lane tightrope and must perform in the League Cup, or soon face the exit door.
Strikers are paid to score goals and ones which cost a King’s ransom such as the Spaniard did must do so regularly.
Since his summer 2013 arrival however, Soldado has failed to deliver on that front – netting just 13 times – and more frustratingly for the fans, doesn’t ever appear to get out of second or third gear in his general play.
Arriving during the same influx as Soldado for £17m, the Brazilian international’s initial promise and encouraging eye for the odd goal have evaporated into ether this season.
Paulinho has made just one substitute appearance in the Premier League and looks on borrowed time unless a miracle occurs.
Yet another player bought off the back of the Gareth Bale money who has failed to live up to expectations, the Romanian centre-back has put in s series of error-strewn displays this season.
A bit of enigma to many a Lilywhites fan, the England international is still seldom trusted to start Premier League games.
Townsend is also a constant source of frustration for his one-trick-pony tendencies to cut inside and shoot without paying any attention to other options around him.
Currently on the injury comeback trail and possibly in line for a start against Brighton, Spurs’ utility full-back cannot be criticised for his attitude or workrate like some at the top of this list.
However, it’s just a question of whether or not the former Sheffield United trainee actually has the requisite ability to propel Spurs into their desired top-four spots.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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