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Best And Worst Rated Tottenham Players vs Watford: Trippier’s Constant Threat Kept Watford On Their Toes

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Saturday’s 1-0 win over Watford on Saturday was enough to take Tottenham up to second place in the Premier League.

That’s the club’s highest ever league position at this point in the Premier League season. Manchester City’s loss to league leaders Leicester earlier in the day helped matters, as would an Arsenal loss against Bournemouth on Sunday. Whatever happens in that latter game however, Tottenham will remain second through the weekend.

Though only a single goal decided Saturday’s contest, that should not lead one to the assumption that this match was at all close. Tottenham dominated proceedings from the opening whistle and rarely looked like relenting. Mauricio Pochettino’s preferred high press was firing on all cylinders and as a result, Watford rarely looked like getting out of their own half of the pitch, much less ever threatening Hugo Lloris’ goal.

That level of quality was a team-wide effort, with most everyone on the Tottenham doing their part to keep Watford on the heels.

Who did what best though? Let’s take a look at this week’s best and worst performers in Matchday 25’s Squad Rankings.

1. Kieran Trippier – 9.5 – Man of the Match

The ex-Burnley man scored the goal that decided the match for Tottenham – his first for the club. Prior to the goal, though, he spent the match aggressively testing Watford left-back Nathan Ake, often getting the better of him. While none of his crosses resulted in goals, Trippier’s constant threat kept Watford on their toes throughout the match. He deserved his goal.

2. Christian Eriksen – 8 – Dynamo

Tottenham’s Danish playmaker is looking right at home back in his preferred spot just behind Harry Kane. Though he often had to drop deeper than he might have liked, his clever passing and great movement came close to undoing Watford numerous times

3. Dele Alli – 8 – Super Sub

The 19-year-old was unable to start the match due to the lingering effects of his dizzy spell in Tuesday’s match against Norwich. When he did come on, though, he made an almost immediate impact. Three minutes in, he found himself with the ball and unmarked in Watford’s penalty area. He caught Trippier with a cross across goal and thereby helped break the deadlock.

4. Ben Davies – 7.5 – Unlucky

That both of Tottenham’s full-backs managed to have great chances afforded to them is a testament to how poorly Watford managed their flanks. Davies was unlucky not to have put Tottenham up in the first half at least twice.

5. Toby Alderweireld – 7.5 – Leader

With Jan Vertonghen down for the next few weeks, the task of keeping Tottenham’s backline organized fell to Alderweireld. He did superbly well even if he was rarely tested by an overwhelmed Watford attack.

6. Mousa Dembele – 7.0 – Fulcrum

The Belgian midfielder continues to impress alongside Eric Dier in the center of Tottenham’s midfield. He again did well to keep the press tight on Watford’s efforts to play out of the back and cycled possession back into attack efficiently.

7. Kevin Wimmer – 7.0 – Promising

So far, signs are good that Wimmer can capably cover for Vertonghen while the Belgian is out injured. The key over the next few weeks will be to continue to refine his partnership with Alderweireld, but for now, Tottenham fans have every reason to be satisfied with the Austrian.

8. Eric Dier – 7.0 – Recycler

When Dier is not dropping deep to help cover defense or aggressively closing down opposition attempts to pass out of the center of the park, he is reliably distributing the ball back forward when Tottenham’s (numerous) attacks occasionally peter out. That recycling effort is a key component of Tottenham’s attempts to keep the pressure on the opposition.

9. Erik Lamela – 6.5 – Returned

The Argentine’s absence from Pochettino’s lineups over the last couple matches has been curious, but no doubt he was due some rest after a busy first half of the season. Here he again proved to be a reliable force cutting inside from the right side of attack.

10. Harry Kane – 6.0 – Underwhelmed

Often capable of turning matches on a whim, here the England striker was effectively corralled by Watford’s compact defense. A match to forget for Tottenham’s talisman.

11. Hugo Lloris – 6.0 – Bored

Watford failed to make a single shot on Tottenham’s goal and didn’t even make many inaccurate efforts. Lloris is arguably the best keeper in the Premier League, but his presence behind the league’s best defense often means he is untested in most matches.

12. Nacer Chadli – 5.0 – Reversal

While he’s had two great games in as many weeks, Chadli looked a bit lost here. He regularly found himself in advantageous positions, only to squander the subsequent chance. It seemed to be too worried with getting a goal when his primary concern should have been to give Tottenham width and exploit Watford’s weakness in that area.

 

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