Many Tottenham Hotspur supporters were left questioning Mauricio Pochettino’s decision to replace Tanguy Ndombele with Harry Winks, as Spurs lost 3-0 away to Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday.
Will this be Mauricio Pochettino's last season at Tottenham?
Tottenham found themselves 2-0 behind going into the break at the Amex Stadium in the midway kick-off, with a Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son led offence displaying little threat to Mat Ryan’s net on the south coast.
Only Pochettino’s opening wide men Erik Lamela and Christian Eriksen had fashioned a shot on goal during the opening 52 minutes, after an injury to goalkeeper Hugo Lloris saw referee Jonathan Moss add on an additional seven minutes stoppage-time.
Spurs’ midfield also lacked creativity in the first-half, with Eric Dier the only other visiting player to register a key ball than striker Kane, per WhoScored data.
In search of a spark to ignite a comeback, Pochettino hauled Ndombele off at the interval for Winks, despite Tottenham’s £53.8million (BBC) Frenchman holding the highest pass accuracy rating of their midfield unit, albeit from the least attempts.
Fans were left questioning their head coach’s decision to call time on Ndombele’s afternoon early, with many suggesting Dier should have been the one to make way.
Dier had won possession with more tackles and attempted more than Ndombele, though, and had won two aerial duels whereas his younger teammate lost his two battles for the ball.
Winks, meanwhile, was unable to be the spark that ignited a comeback as Dier slotted into a three-man backline, as the 23-year-old failed to deliver a key ball, and failed to win possession with either his sole attempted tackle or aerial duel while being dispossessed twice – the joint-most of any Spurs man in the second-half.
Tottenham would lose the game 3-0 to head into the 3pm kick-offs a point outside the top-four, but with the potential of ending the weekend 13th in the Premier League standings having been beaten by Leicester City and Newcastle United already this term.
Here are some of the reactions shared when Spurs announced that Winks was coming on at the break to replace Ndombele against Brighton…
How was this the right change
— JordsLDN (@Jords_LDN) October 5, 2019
Im actually done
— Jack (@JackCarterthfc) October 5, 2019
Excuse me WHAT
— Namey McNameson (@NMcnameson) October 5, 2019
poch really hates us
— (@THFCurtis) October 5, 2019
Ok, this is terrible.
— ً (@thfcmat) October 5, 2019
Are you serious
— sami (@hmson7i) October 5, 2019
Why tanguy? Bring off dier
— WINKSY_WZN. (@WINKSY_SZN8) October 5, 2019
Why is Dier still on the pitch
— Elai Roberts (@elaijabruh) October 5, 2019
— Mike (@THFCMikey) October 5, 2019
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— THFC (@RealDGGHD) October 5, 2019
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