Tottenham Hotspur are back in action on Thursday evening, but rather than their usual Europa League fixture, they face Fulham in a rearranged Premier League clash.
And Jose Mourinho will be looking to see his side build on their 4-0 whitewash of Burnley at the weekend with qualification for Europe once again firmly in their sights.
Spurs had slipped to five defeats in six outings before kickoff on Sunday and remain six points adrift of fourth-placed West Ham.
The performance in north London surely left Mourinho with food for thought – four goals and a clean sheet, both had been a rarity in recent times, so he must stick with a similar lineup at Craven Cottage tonight.
That involves the inclusion of divisive centre-back Davinson Sanchez, too.
The 24-year-old is often regarded as one of Spurs’ worst central defensive options, indeed Mourinho has previously earmarked him as a “weak link” in the past, but as we outlined in this article, he proved many doubters wrong against the Clarets.
Paul Robinson echoed this turn around in form, he told Football Insider:
“We saw his attributes at the weekend against Burnley, in what was a tough physical challenge. They test you from set plays and from crosses. It is always a battle against Burnley and I thought Sanchez did exceptionally well.”
Sanchez has now started their last four Premier League outings, where he has kept two clean sheets. It would be a silly decision to now drop him despite all of the doubts that come regarding his ability.
From a numbers standpoint, the 6 foot 2 colossus has actually performed very well.
He tops the charts for aerial duels won per game (three), is only behind Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Serge Aurier for tackles per game (2.3) and has the best passing accuracy (85.5%) when compared to the experienced duo of Toby Alderweireld and Eric Dier, via WhoScored.
Of course, individual mistakes and lapses of concentration cannot be ignored, but he is only 24 and was once Spurs’ record signing at £42m. Now that he has settled as a first-choice option under Mourinho, he’s looking a lot more stable.
This is why the Portuguese boss must keep the faith in him, as big of a gamble it would be. In some ways, Guest is right. Sanchez is now undroppable – at least until the next calamitous incident.