Tottenham striker Vincent Janssen has struggled to live up to his £17 million price tag since the summer move from AZ Alkmaar. He has slowly become a player on the fringes of the first team rather than competing with Harry Kane for a first-team spot. Janssen was largely seen as a backup to Kane and a player with immense potential and someone who could challenge for the first-team spot. It has not been the case since the 22-year-old has struggled to make any impact in the Premier League. He is yet to score from open play this season.
Janssen received a great opportunity to finally end his goal drought when he started against Aston Villa in the FA Cup third round. The game against the Championship club, who are not really setting that table on fire, should have been seen as a great opportunity to get a goal. This was not the case, as Janssen had to be taken off at the hour mark with yet another poor performance. Janssen’s last goal in any competition was against Leicester towards the end of October.
Mauricio Pochettino admitted that the striker was indeed struggling, but he pointed out to the fact that many great forwards have struggled early in their Premier League careers. If his penalties are not taken into account, he has managed to hit 33 shots on target without actually finding the back of the net. Pochettino claimed that the striker needs to adapt to the league and as quoted by the Express Sport, he said:
“Yes it’s true that he’s struggling. But he’s very young, it’s different league, he needs to adapt his game and to work hard and not be frustrated from that performance.
“We are a staff that push the players a lot and we will push him to try to get the level that the team need from him.”
The inability to score goals has become a major problem for the striker in recent weeks. He has become increasingly marginalised in the last few weeks with the striker managing appearances as a late substitute. He has often come up as a late substitute with just a few minutes left on the clock. One has to go back to the game against Leicester to witness Janssen completing 90 minutes of football. It is highly unlikely that Janssen would get game time in the near future barring injuries to Kane or Dele Alli.
Even though Pochettino says that Harry Kane and Diego Costa struggled to make much of an impact in the recent game with Chelsea, but it is unlikely to be of a consolation to the player. This Premier League campaign has been dominated by forwards with Alexis Sanchez being the only an orthodox forward to make his place in the top five scorers. Janssen may not get many first-team opportunities to prove himself, as Spurs are reportedly looking at options to improve the attack.