There is no doubt Jose Mourinho has reignited something at Spurs that was missing in the final stages of Mauricio Pochettino’s tenure. While Tottenham have picked up the third highest amount of points in the Premier League (26) since he took charge, only behind Liverpool (32) and Manchester City, there are still a lot of things the Portuguese has been unable to repair at his new club.
Football FanCast looks at three key Spurs problems Mourinho is still yet to fix…
Tottenham’s 7-2 defeat at home to Bayern Munich under Pochettino was a clear indication that defensive shortcomings needed immediate addressing in the Mourinho era, but individual errors are becoming a real problem.
While three out of four clean sheets that Tottenham have claimed this season have been under Mourinho, the Tottenham boss tellingly claimed in December that Amazon could do a full episode of their upcoming Spurs documentary on his side’s defensive problems.
Not that much has improved since, with 72% of Tottenham’s goals conceded under the Portuguese prior to Saturday’s 2-1 defeat allegedly being due to individual errors and set pieces.
Their defensive record has seen a slight improvement since Mourinho replaced Pochettino in November. Under the Argentine, Spurs had conceded two goals per game across all competitions this season, whereas Mourinho’s arrival has seen this fall to 1.4.
Although this is a step in the right direction, Spurs will likely need to improve more in defence if they’re to qualify for the Champions League.
Toby Alderweireld revealed that Mourinho was an influence on him renewing his Spurs contract after he was set to leave on a free transfer this summer, but the Portuguese is yet to have such luck with his Belgian compatriot.
Jan Vertonghen is one of the best centre-backs to ever play for the North London club yet has received a total WhoScored rating of 6.84 for the current Premier League season, which is his lowest ever in the English top flight. Perhaps hes simply past his best at the age of 32, but you can’t help but think the uncertainty over his future is somewhat linked as well.
According to Sky Sports News, the Spurs defender was keen to discuss a new contract in November following Mourinho’s arrival, however nothing has materialised one way or the other.
After being hauled off the pitch against Southampton earlier this month, Vertonghen spent
the rest of the match on the bench with his head in his hands, while he was also part of the vulnerable Spurs defence that conceded two sloppy goals against Chelsea on Saturday.
Clarity on his future, even if Vertonghen will be leaving the club in the summer, should be a must for Mourinho.
Dele Alli initially looked revitalised under Mourinho after finding the net just once before the turn of November in all competitions.
The England international was involved in three goals during Mourinho’s first two matches, which equalled his contribution from his last 12 games under Pochettino, and followed up in December with a strike against Manchester United.
However, things have gone south since then having scored just twice in his last 16 outings, and it looks as though not even ‘The Special One’ will be able to recover the form Alli showed during his first 18 months at Spurs.
The 23-year-old was brought off in Tottenham’s Champions League tie against RB Leipzig after failing to make any sort of impact on the match, and perhaps due to his petulant reaction then found himself dropped from the starting XI for the 2-1 defeat to Chelsea.