Davinson Sanchez has been one of the World Cup’s standout performers this summer, and the Colombian was so good on Tuesday that Tottenham might not miss Toby Alderweireld after all.
There was plenty for Spurs fans to cheer on Tuesday night, as Harry Kane, Kieran Trippier and Eric Dier all fired home crucial penalties for England. Trippier in particular was one of the best players on the pitch.
Perhaps the performance fans should be most proud of though came from a yellow shirt, as Sanchez’s fantastic first season in North London culminated with a truly great centre back showing.
The 22 year-old was impressive through the season for Spurs, but his positioning can be suspect at times and he does have a tendency to lose concentration in vital moments. Because of this, plenty of fans have feared the worst about potentially losing the much more experienced, composed Alderweireld this summer.
However, Sanchez’s performance on Tuesday had everything you could ever want from a centre back, showing all the pace and physicality he displayed all season with an added level of coolness and maturity. It was a coming of age performance if there ever was one.
Alongside the colossal Yerry Mina, Tottenham’s 22 year-old made 83 touches, helping Colombia establish some control in the match when it looked to be slipping away from them. His ball-playing ability developed fantastically at Ajax, and will help him fill the shoes of the extremely technically gifted Alderweireld.
He made a simply ridiculous 12 clearances, the most of anyone in the game, and actually won more aerial duels than the 6 ft 5 Mina with six. His block to deny Raheem Sterling in the first half was vital, and he needed every ounce of the nous he has picked up this season to avoid fouling Jesse Lingard in the box with the score at 1-0.
If that isn’t enough reasons for fans to be proud of their future star, he did not get involved with any of his side’s rather infuriating tactics, choosing instead to focus on doing everything he could to keep them in the game.
If Alderweireld does leave, especially to another team in the Premier League, then fans have every right to feel annoyed. However, they certainly should not fret about the hole he will leave in the team, as his replacement has been in North London for 12 months already.
Sanchez, valued at £36m by Transfermarkt, won’t be ready to replace the Belgian in one or two years – he’s ready right now.
So, Tottenham fans, how impressed were you by Sanchez’s performance? Who else impressed you on Tuesday night? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below…