Why Tottenham should plot a January swoop for Fabian Schar
After the shock 1-0 defeat to Newcastle United last month, Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino admitted that his team lacked unity and desire.
Those words of an angry Pochettino certainly did reach out to the players as Spurs produced a much better performance in the north London derby against Arsenal at the Emirates on Sunday.
Although Tottenham and Arsenal played out yet another thrilling north London derby, Pochettino’s defensive frailties were exposed once again. Spurs are yet to keep a clean sheet this season having already conceded six goals. They have conceded three goals in their last two matches after a 2-2 draw with Arsenal last weekend.
And their defending was questionable for both goals, with both Spurs’ defenders—Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen—showing a real lack of pace. Injury to Kyle Walker-Peters forced Pochettino to use Davinson Sanchez at right-back, even though he had a fully-fit Serge Aurier on the bench.
It is uncharacteristic to see Tottenham struggle defensively under Pochettino this campaign. They have always been a well-organised and disciplined defensive unit, very difficult for the opposition to breach. Pochettino must be worried about his team’s lack of pace and cohesion in defence after just four games into the new season.
To put things into perspective, Tottenham must sign a new centre-back in the next transfer window.
The likes of Alderweireld and Vertonghen are getting older and lack the legs to play most games throughout a season. Moreover, the two Belgium internationals are out of contract next summer, while Sanchez and Foyth need some more time to become a regular fixture as they are still very young.
Spurs could do a good job by signing Newcastle United’s Fabian Schar in January. The north London outfit were interested in signing the defender ahead of the summer transfer window. Tottenham opted against signing a centre-half in the summer and that has probably come back to bite them in the new season.
Nevertheless, Pochettino can rectify his mistake by reigniting interest in Fabian Schar.
Fabian Schar, 27, was one of Newcastle’s top performers last season, helping the club achieve a comfortable 13th placed finish. He has hit the ground running in the new campaign, scoring the equaliser against Watford to salvage a draw for the Magpies on Saturday.
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Athletic and powerful, the Switzerland international is the sort of modern-day defender that Pochettino would love to have in his squad.
He is a ball-playing defender, who never hesitates to come off his line with the ball and make a quick pass to one of his teammates. Schar has also shown a good eye for goal, bagging four last season and already has one under his banner this term.
A strong tackler and a good reader of the game, the former FC Basel is operating in the prime of his career. And as he is Premier League proven, there is no doubt that Schar will improve Spurs’ backline immediately. Hence, Pochettino must do everything possible to sign the Swiss star in the New Year.