Harry Winks faces an important season at Tottenham Hotspur.
The England international struggled with injuries throughout the 2018/19 campaign, making a total of 41 appearances in all competitions.
Groin surgery limited his effectiveness towards the end of the season and Winks played just one of the club’s final 10 games in the Premier League.
With Spurs signing Tanguy Ndombele from Lyon in a club-record deal, one feels that Winks’ faces a fight to retain his position, particularly after Moussa Sissoko ended the season in such strong form.
Yet the 5 foot 10 Englishman is one of the most effective players in the squad.
Per WhoScored, he averages 53.4 passes per game in the Premier League with a passing accuracy of 91.8%.
No player is better at keeping the ball in Spurs’ ranks but it may be to the detriment of his overall game.
He averages less than a single tackle per game, along with 0.8 interceptions, 0.6 fouls and 0.7 clearances. He has 0.3 key passes per game, 0.7 dribbles and failed to register an assist in the Premier League last season.
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Winks often sits deep, looking to keep the ball moving and giving it to the more advanced midfield players, the likes of Eriksen and Alli.
Yet, if Ndombele is going to come in – he registered seven assists for Lyon last season along with an 89.1% pass accuracy – Winks needs to be offering more.
His numbers are poor but Mauricio Pochettino seems to trust him and he will surely be an important part of the squad again next season as Spurs challenge on all fronts. Injuries saw the squad pushed to the limit in 2018/19, despite reaching the Champions League final.
But if he is to be first-choice in central midfield, Winks will need to become more than just an accurate passer of the ball. Every side needs a metronome, yet whether it’s improvement defensively or offensively, Winks needs another string to his bow.
With Ndomble arriving from Lyon, the pressure is on.