Davinson Sanchez is finally living up to expectations at Tottenham Hotspur.
The 25-year-old centre-back, who joined in a £42m deal from Ajax in August 2017, has failed to make much of an impact throughout his time in north London and was widely believed to be one of several stars up for sale this summer.
But he’s quickly gone from zero-to-hero under Nuno Santo and has arguably been his best player since the Premier League returned last month.
Spurs sit top of the standings with a 100% record and have not conceded a single goal either. Sanchez has started and played the full 90 minutes in all three matches, even despite the summer addition of Cristian Romero from Atalanta.
The Colombian international was in and out of the starting XI under Jose Mourinho last season, playing from the off in 17 of his 18 league appearances, via Transfermarkt.
A nightmarish display that saw West Ham earn a point from 3-0 down saw him axed for nearly three months and then the situation repeated itself towards the end of the campaign after dropping more late points against Newcastle United.
It led to former Republic of Ireland international Kenny Cunningham lambasting Sanchez as a “real liability to his team” to the ‘Off The Ball’ podcast.
Indeed, he finished the 2020/21 season outside of Spurs’ top ten highest-rated players (6.67) but so far, it’s been a completely different story and he deserves plenty of more recognition for his fine form.
Now averaging a WhoScored rating of 7.19, Sanchez has led the way defensively, managing a total of nine successful tackles, six aerial duels won, three interceptions and 12 clearances.
These are largely numbers that exceed his current defensive partner Eric Dier, who has been nominated for the Premier League’s ‘Player of the Month’, only reinforcing the need to hand Sanchez his praise.
Spurs have only found the net three times across their three matches, whilst they are yet to concede despite facing defending champions Manchester City and Nuno’s former club Wolves.
Once lauded as a “beast” by Mauricio Pochettino, it’s evident that the 6 foot 2 centre-back is starting to finally show his promise as a young defender and whilst he will need to keep up that consistency after the international break, he has been the unsung hero of this Spurs squad so far in 2021/22.