Switching Spurs man into centre of defence a must for Pochettino

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Mauricio Pochettino is having a tough time of it at Spurs. Two of his three strikers wouldn’t be able to hit the net if it were double in size and had no keeper minding it. Figuring out his best midfield, either in the attacking trio or the two behind, is like trying to escape a Chinese finger trap and he’s picked the wrong Frenchman as the team’s skipper.

None of those myriad problems even touches on the defence, which is even more perplexing than the midfield as to who should be most trusted with protecting Hugo Lloris.

Younes Kaboul, appointed skipper by the Argentine manager after the start of the season despite showing all the leadership credentials of a cowering private, has started all 11 Premier League games but has underperformed.

Jan Vertonghen, another with a lofty reputation at White Hart Lane, has been trusted in six games but has been equally uninspiring, while reserves Vlad Chiriches and Federico Fazio have been afforded two starts apiece, with the latter looking particularly error prone in that time.

The one player who has spent the least amount of time marshalling the defence is the one who has perhaps impressed the most. Eric Dier started the season opener against West Ham alongside Kaboul, but was shunted to right-back after Kyle Naughton’s red card and has stayed there ever since.

It seems the former Sporting Lisbon defender has had his fill on the flanks though, having asked England U21 manager Gareth Southgate not to consider him for the upcoming internationals against Portugal and France, because he preferred to train with Tottenham in a bid to win a centre-back berth.

With Spurs not keeping a clean sheet in four top-flight outings and becoming lengthy 9/1-shots to finish in the top-four on the back of just one win in that time, Pochettino would do well to give Dier another chance in the middle after the youngster’s show of dedication.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.