Spurs: 2020 in review
Glenn Hoddle has told Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho he should return to Southampton once again in 2021 so he can sign his missing link: James Ward-Prowse. Since victory over north London rivals Arsenal on December 6, Spurs have only won once in the Premier League in their last five outings, with defeats to Liverpool and Leicester City sandwiched in-between 1-1 draws against Crystal Palace and Wolves.
Spurs have impressed on the whole this season though, sitting just four points behind league-leaders Liverpool, and have the chance to reach the Carabao Cup final tonight when they take on Brentford in the semis.
It has been just over 13 months since Mourinho took charge at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and he looks set to challenge for the Premier League title this season.
The form – and partnership – of Harry Kane and Son Heung-min have been pivotal to their success, while only Manchester City (13) have conceded less than the 15 goals Spurs have shipped this season, as Mourinho appears to have found an effective formula at either end of the pitch.
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The summer arrival of Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg from Southampton has proved a major success and for a fee of around £15 million, was an absolute steal.
But former Tottenham and England manager Hoddle believes his old club are still lacking a creative passer in midfield. That was something Spurs rarely lacked when Christian Eriksen was on the pitch but it is almost 12 months since he left for Inter Milan for a fee of around £16.9m.
And Hoddle believes Spurs’ hierarchy should once again pick up the phone and call their counterparts at Southampton, a club which in recent years have provided Tottenham with Hojbjerg, Paulo Gazzaniga, Victor Wanyama and of course former manager Mauricio Pochettino.
When asked what kind of player Spurs were missing at the moment, Hoddle replied: “I would probably look at a player who can pick passes.
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“Someone like Bruno Fernandes. When Christian Eriksen was on song for two-and-a-bit seasons, he could hit those passes to Dele Alli or Harry Kane or whoever made those runs.
“I am not sure if it is Jose Mourinho’s style of player. They have some decent players there, but Giovani Lo Celso and Tanguy Ndombele are different, they run with the ball, they are holders of the ball. But someone who can hurt you with a pass, a real creative player.
“I have said it before, I do not think Jose would like him but the lad at Southampton, James Ward-Prowse, would be a major asset. Him and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg would be a nice balance.”
Ward-Prowse has been integral to Southampton’s success in recent years and was made club captain following Hojberg’s departure in the summer.
The 26-year-old has made 247 appearances in the Premier League, scoring 26 goals. Widely considered one of the best set-piece specialists in the country, he has scored nine free-kicks and four penalties in the top flight since his debut in 2012 and his crossing has become feared by opposition managers.
Ward-Prowse is arguably unfortunate to only have four England caps to his name thus far but his consistent performances for his club saw him rewarded with a five-year contract in the summer.
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