It has been reported that Arsenal keeper Cech is a major doubt for this weekend’s North London Derby against Tottenham. But while Arsenal are sweating on their number one goalkeeper, Tottenham are likely to be having Toby Alderweireld in their starting line up for the match.
Tottenham’s Toby Alderweireld returned from his long term lay off last night, helping guide his team to a 2-0 win over the Newport County. His comeback comes at a crucial time for Tottenham, with their current form a far cry from what was expected at the beginning of the season, meaning he will be a major lift going into Saturday’s North London derby.
Between 2015 and 2017, Alderweireld was the best centre back in the Premier League by a country mile. His commanding performances, classy playing style and disciple give Tottenham the security they needed at the back, and his partnership with Vertonghen is up there with the best in the business.
Without him, Spurs have struggled, despite Davidson Sanchez impressing since his summer transfer from Ajax. Sanchez’s physical style, pace and reading of the game has ensured he’s settled in very quickly, and he must be given great credit for this, as very few players successfully make the move from Holland to England.
Despite his success, Tottenham have missed Alderweireld as part of a three, and he will slot seamlessly back into the team. Without him, they have found themselves guilty of being stretched defensively, with players getting in behind, and Salah’s performance on Sunday showed just how weak they can be at times, despite having the best defence in the league.
Come Saturday, Tottenham will need to be at their very best, as optimism is high at Arsenal. Pierre-EmerickAubameyang and HenrickhMkhitaryan tore Everton apart last week, while Mesut Ozil created his own wonderland, revelling in the possibilities of what an efficient attack can achieve with his wizardry.
Arsenal’s performance against Everton showed the quick, one touch football that they used to play is still very much there. The departure of Alexis Sanchez and the extension of Mesut Ozilhas lifted a weight off the shoulders of the team, and the addition of the former Dortmund duo has marked a new sign of ambition for the club.
With this confidence from the players and fans, Spurs will need to be at their very best and Alderweirald must be at his razor sharp best. With Aubameyang’s pace and clinical, ruthless style, one mistake could cost this Spurs team dearly.
It’s also worth noting that the game is not at White Heart Lane. Although Spurs’ form at Wembley has improved, no team has played there more over the last four years than Arsenal, and they’ve won every game. The big pitch suits Arsenal’s playing style, and the fact it’s at Wembley will encourage every player to stand up and play for the shirt. Alderweireld has been out a long time, and unless he’s 100%, Arsenal could make him look very foolish very quickly!