Ever since Pochettino has deployed 3 center backs at the back, he has achieved a decent success with his side that were beginning to disappoint in the midst of the season that has gone past us. Dier, Verthongen and Toby Alderweireld are the three defenders with the responsibility of taking care of the defensive side of things, whereas full backs Rose and Walker are entrusted with attacking responsibilities.
Apart from these three, Spurs are gifted with senior center backs due to the departures of Federico Fazio and Vlad Chiriches. Kevin Wimmer is still at the club and could be forced back into contention due to Vertonghen’s recent injury, but he too hasn’t had much success when called in to replace either of the two Belgians at the helm of the Spurs defence. Cameron Carter-Vickers is a talent, but a first team spot could come too soon for him.
Stefan De Vrij, a Holland international has had his name doing the rounds around Tottenham circles as Mauricio Pochettino looks to stabilize his Spurs side and challenge for the title; like they did last season. De Vrij started his career out with Feyenoord and went on to play there for a good five seasons, also captaining the side for a brief period.
Still only 24, it seems like he has been around for ages. He first came into the spotlight when he was picked in the preliminary squad for the Euro 2012 tournament. Although he did not make it to the final cut, De Vrij’s name stuck around. By the time the next major international tournament came in, he was a regular in the national team. He played in all games during the 2014 World Cup, scoring a goal against Spain in a 5-1 victory and due to his performances, he adjudged to be worthy of a place in a combined World Cup 2014 side as his team finished in 3rd place.
After impressing at the World Cup, De Vrij was at the centre of attention from many clubs, including Manchester United who were then taken over by Louis Van Gaal, De Vrij’s coach at the aforementioned World Cup. Although a temptation to follow his manager loomed large, as De Vrij chose to move to Lazio, where he has done sufficiently well over two and a half seasons.
He has adapted to the Italian league well and is at home at Lazio, where he also has compatriot winger Ricardo Kishna to keep him company. At Lazio, he has become a defensive rock and has further enhanced his game, which was already well developed in the Dutch league. Interest from several top sides in him should not come as a surprise as he had famously turned down offers from bigger clubs to join Lazio.
Spurs, in particular, must act fast in order to sign him up as he would be an excellent addition to their effervescent defence that so seldom concedes goals cheaply. He would add a lot and certainly a certain amount of depth to Pochettino’s pre-existing riches in defense. Even the player has come out and said that he would be willing to play for Spurs, where there is no lack of ex-Eredivisie players. He should definitely snub interest from Chelsea and sign for the Lily-Whites.