Where is World Cup Kieran Trippier? That is the question that the Lilywhites have been asking for months now. The marauding wingback may have been one of the best wingbacks in the world in the minds of many football fans last summer, but now many would do anything to let him go.
After Trippier shone with the world watching, Tottenham fans were licking their lips at the prospect of him firing for them in the 2018/19 season. Barring a couple of average showings, it just has not come to fruition, though, and we stand here now, with one game left this season, the biggest game in Tottenham’s recent history, with the Lilywhites desperate to see Trippier sold in the summer.
His lows have come thick and fast. Horror performances left, right and centre and a vast number of supporters who would do anything to get him off the wage bill. That doesn’t mean that the £31.5 million ace, as valued by Transfermarkt, has been all bad, and even with his shocking performances, there have been some moments to savour for Tripper, but ultimately, if he leaves in the coming months it will be a sigh of relief as opposed to an emotional goodbye.
On the back of one of the best World Cup performances in recent memory, the way that Trippier has flopped this season has been amplified ten-fold. In truth, it’s hard to pick a moment where you can say Trippier had a blinder, but to do so we’re going back a very long way to a game where a couple of anomalies took place. August 18th 2018, weeks after the end of the World Cup, Tottenham 3-1 Fulham.
The first anomaly of the day, or the first that the Lilywhites cottoned onto, was that Harry Kane scored a Premier League goal in August. The second was Trippier playing a blinder in the 2018/19 season. The 28-year-old was sublime from minute one, and if you really can’t remember it, he buried a free-kick from the best part of 30-yards, a skill which the Lilywhites are convinced he picked up in Russia and has quickly forgotten.
In Russia, it was Trippier’s crowning moment. The moment which likely turned the heads of those at Real Madrid (what a strange rumour from the Sun that was) that Trippier could be a star when he buried the opener against Croatia with a stunning free-kick. At least the Lilywhites got to see it in their colours too, and it’s a deserving high point of the season for him, although it’s also hard to enjoy it and savour it now knowing how bad the other nine months of his season have panned out.
In truth, and many of you Tottenham fans will sympathise with us here, it has been hard to just pick one low for Kieran Trippier. The 28-year-old came into the season off the back of his best summer ever and has been woeful. His own-goal against Chelsea in the Premier League was poor, giving the ball away against Man United for their goal at Wembley equally painful, but his worst moment came in the FA Cup.
In the grand scheme of things, the moment we’ve picked may not look to be so significant but bear with us here, please. January was a tough month for Tottenham, Harry Kane suffered his ankle injury, leaving the club thin on the ground, then in the space of three days Mauricio Pochettino’s chances of winning a trophy took a massive hit as they were knocked out of the Carabao and FA Cups, with Trippier missing a decisive penalty against Palace as they bowed out of the FA Cup in his low of the season.
The Lilywhites hadn’t even hit February and without Kane and fighting for just the top four and the Champions League, which back then looked a million miles out of Tottenham’s reach, things were oh so bleak. Trippier fronted that blame too. The 2-0 away loss at Selhurst Park was tough and had England’s World Cup hero been able to score from the spot it may have given Tottenham some hope. Instead, he blazed it horribly wide, which is something of a metaphor for his season in North London.
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