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The answer to Tottenham’s lack of squad depth? Pochettino should leave no stone unturned in signing this Russian World Cup powerhouse

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Spurs should sign Denis Cheryshev to add to their squad depth

Denis Cheryshev was a name relatively unfamiliar to the fans around the world before the 2018 World Cup but his stocks must have soared sky-high after his wonderful performances in Russia. He wasn’t a starter for the hosts in the inaugural game against Saudi Arabia but an injury to Alan Dzagoev opened the door for him to make his mark.

Cheryshev scored the opening goal of the World Cup and established himself as one of the driving forces behind Russia’s march to their first ever World Cup quarter-final. The 28-year-old also scored a wonderful left-footed long-ranger against Croatia in the quarterfinals as Russia crashed out on penalties.

A product of the Real Madrid youth system, Cheryshev failed to make his cut at the senior level at Bernabeu and made just two appearances for the Los Blancos before being loaned out to Sevilla. The Russian has had loan stints at Valencia and Villarreal but none of them has been particularly productive.

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Lack of stability and first-team involvement on his loan spells hasn’t allowed Cheryshev to realise his potential. He joined Villarreal in a permanent deal in 2016 but he was once again loaned out to Valencia following a season of mediocre returns.

A fast, agile and fleet-footed attacker, Cheryshev is known for his lightning pace and silky dribbling skills. He has a decent technique and is capable of producing spectacular goals with his magical left foot. He has earned rave reviews for his bravery and ambitious nature as a footballer and is never afraid to put his foot through the ball from outside the box.

However, his ambitious nature has often gotten him into trouble at his former clubs. In other words, he is a scorer of good goals rather than a good goalscorer.

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Cheryshev is someone who plays with a positive body language and his directness and ability to exploit open spaces down the flanks can make him a perfect fit for the Premier League. Furthermore, he is a good crosser who has the vision to create chances from the flanks.

To put things into perspective, he would be a good addition to Tottenham’s squad in January. Despite not making a single new signing in the summer, Mauricio Pochettino’s side has surpassed all expectations. The Lilywhites have excelled on all fronts, sitting 2nd in the Premier League behind Liverpool and have also made it to the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League.

As things stand, a player like Cheryshev is not going to bring anything extra to Tottenham’s attack. They already have the likes of Harry Kane, Christian Eriksen, Heung-min Son, Erik Lamela, Dele Alli and Lucas Moura in their ranks but the Russian can become a valuable squad player for Pochettino.

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Lack of depth in the squad is something that has prevented Spurs from becoming realistic title contenders and the Lilywhites should address that issue in January to push league leaders Liverpool right to the very end.

That said, Spurs should start keeping tabs on Cheryshev’s performances and table a bid for him in January to add more depth to their attacking options.