Tottenham Hotspur return to Premier League action later this evening when they welcome a struggling Manchester United side to north London.
Nuno Santo and his team will be looking to bounce back from last weekend’s disappointing result to local rivals West Ham, having failed to register a single shot throughout the entire second half despite chasing the game.
The Lilywhites did react in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday night but only narrowly saw past Sean Dyche’s rotated Burnley side, so it leaves the Portuguese head coach with a lot to ponder.
Whilst Spurs advanced into the quarter-finals, the performance was far from inspiring, particularly in the final third once again. As such, it would be a surprise to see Steven Bergwijn trusted to start on the wing over goalscorer Lucas Moura.
Indeed, he endured a pretty tough night up against the Claret’s second-string right-flank duo of Connor Roberts and Johann Berg Gudmundsson, who often got the better of him, both recording superior ratings to the Dutchman despite being on the losing side.
Bergwijn lost possession 17 times and completed just 62% of his lowly 21 passing attempts, proving to be an absolute waste with the ball, whilst he only won 50% of his battles and failed to provide a single key pass, accurate cross or shot on goal.
“We need Stevie”, “he’s a very talented player” and “unique” are phrases which have often come out of Nuno’s mouth when speaking about the 24-year-old, so he’s clearly a player that the Spurs boss could call upon this weekend.
But with Moura on the scoresheet and quickly becoming a key cog in this system – he ranks second overall for the campaign behind Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg – it would be wise to axe the £26m-rated star from the starting XI to make way for the Brazilian.
Four goals and six assists in the Premier League are far from inspiring returns from a £25m signing with so much promise in over two years at the club. He’s just not been good enough to warrant his place amongst the starters.
Nuno must opt for Moura and ruthlessly axe Bergwijn from his lineup against United today.