Is Michael Dawson As Good As Spurs Fans Believe?

By on March 16, 2011

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If there’s one thing I love about Twitter is it’s ability to start a full scale debate from one person’s tweet. At approximately 10.30 yesterday morning a Spurs fan, Kevin Jones, said “As a welshman I’m not bothered but Michael Dawson is not an England captain”.

What has followed in the following hour has seen Michael Dawson’s ability to not only be England’s captain but also Spurs captain come into question. There are those who believe his abilities are somewhat limited and if it wasn’t for the constantly injured duo of King and Woodgate he wouldn’t even be in the Spurs side. Some say the returning Kaboul has shown he’s better than Dawson when he gets a run of games under his belt.

The one thing I was surprised about were the amount of people who held a similar opinion to mine. It’s an opinion I’ve mentioned before in this blog, on twitter and face to face during the pre-match Bell and Hare drink, that Michael Dawson isn’t as good as we spurs fans give him credit for. Now, based on the response from those that frequent twitter during their working day that sentence will have you nodding your head in agreement or frothing at the mouth like a rabid dog, making the assumption I’m actually a gooner in disguise.

Let me make this very clear before I start. I like Michael Dawson a lot. He’s the Graham Roberts of the current side, albeit I’d expect Roberts to think he was better, and he was. As the season was coming to a conclusion last year I was standing on the terraces along with every other spurs fan, clamouring for Awesome Dawson’s inclusion in the England world cup squad or even the team. His performances were very good each week and he constantly gave 100% for the team. However, it’s his commitment to the cause that I believe gets us fans behind him more than his ability.

Just look at Pavlyuchenko. If he gave the same commitment Dawson does, there wouldn’t be the split opinion on whether he’s any good or not. If there’s a 50/50 challenge there’s no one in the Spurs team we’d want more going for it. We know he’ll put his head where others won’t put their feet and his body is on the line whenever it’s needed. He’s the first and last line of defence if asked. However, I’d give even more commitment to Spurs than Dawson does if asked to. That doesn’t mean I’d be good enough (if you’re reading Harry, there’s no harm in giving me a shot just in case).

The one thing that lets Dawson down is his positional sense and concentration. When it comes to the simple things he’s a master but anything else he often falls short. For some reason when he plays alongside an experienced defender like Gallas or King he reverts back to a little kid and seems to need to be told where to stand and what to do. Last season he was seen as the veteran defender in his partnership with Bassong and he performed exceptionally. There’s the argument that he hasn’t had a settled partner for most of this season (since he’s returned from injury) but it’s fairly obvious now that it’s him and Gallas. Maybe it’s the clown (sometimes) behind them that doesn’t install confidence on him?

The point is when, or more likely if, every spurs central defender was fit, Michael Dawson wouldn’t even be first replacement. He’d be behind King, Woodgate and Gallas and quite some way behind them. He’d be fighting it out with Kaboul for a place on the bench and with Kaboul’s superior use of the ball as well as flexibility as a right back he’d probably lose that fight. Of course, that’s all theoretical because King and Woodgate should both have their contracts ended this summer to remove them from the wage bill and Gallas probably won’t be with us any longer than next season so the future is Dawson and Kaboul. Unless of course we sign another defender. A Gary Cahill for example would put pressure on Dawson in my opinion.

The type of game Dawson is fantastic in is against the likes of AC Milan. Against Wigan and Wolves he’s not so great. As strange as that sounds it’s because against a Milan or an Arsenal the defence is going to come up against a lot of pressure so concentration is key for 90 minutes which when he knows that’s what he has to do he will. It’s also very tight which means little room for small, jinking strikers to run into the penalty area. When there’s not so much pressure on the defence Dawson has a tendency to fall asleep and hump the ball long at every given opportunity. Look at his performance against Fulham in the cup this season. It’s the perfect example of poor positional play and a lack of concentration.

It’s very hard to get across what I’m trying to convey. Do I hate Michael Dawson? No. Would I drop him? No, but only because at the moment there isn’t a replacement. Do I worry when I see him in the starting line up? No, but do I think there’s better out there for my club, including others already available for selection? Yes.

As a result I can see both sides of the argument. Michael Dawson is a good player. Not great, but good enough. A captain should always be the first name on the team-sheet and while he probably is at the moment that’s more down to circumstances than ability, and regarding the initial tweet, in my opinion Michael Dawson isn’t good enough for the England team, let alone to be England captain.

Let me leave you with this thought, if Michael Dawson was so good wouldn’t other clubs be interested in signing him?

Submitted by THFC1882

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11 Comments

  1. Roy Singh

    March 16, 2011 at 9:44 am

    The key to any players performnce will be his consistency.Whether you are playing against West Ham or AC, you accuracy in defending & striking should not differ. Most importantly, the coaches are the only ones to approach the players & tell them of their mistakes & inconsistencies, otherwise they would not know & continue to play they way they do. Dawson is an athlete & very hard working & needs to work harder at improving in his regular mistakes

  2. Tom

    March 16, 2011 at 10:01 am

    ?

  3. thfc

    March 16, 2011 at 10:04 am

    I’ve been shouting Dawson ain’t that great for a while, He’s committed, he gives everything. But lacks a bit of composure, he ain’t that dominate in the air and lacks mobility (he’s nether a leader either too quiet) . He we be a good premiership defender for a lower club but not for a side challenging for top 4 . Compare him to other top centre backs from the top clubs Vidic Terry Ferdinand Carragher King woodgate he’s just not in the league and never will be. If any one goals through the goals concede when dawson plays he’s one of the main culprits (Fulham game). Plus the wolves game does anyone think any of the top defenders i mentioned would of got caught under the ball for there equaliser. Y do you think dawson always looks better playing with top centre backs king woodgate gallas and when he’s the experienced defender we look a shambles.

  4. Walis Ford

    March 16, 2011 at 10:08 am

    This is pretty harsh, since Dawson has been an able replacement for King. Let us not forget the others may have weaknesses too- I remember at Blackburn both Woody & King getting out jumped, played, etc by the makeshift attacker Samba. I felt Dawson, would have fared better. The reasons why Daws is so highly rated is that he shows passion and is a competent, trustworthy defender. Woody & King are unlikely to replace Dawson, since they have fitness issues which are unlikely to improve- and its best if they are moved on next year- inorder for Kaboul(who IS NOT A BETTER DEFENDER OR EQUAL TO DAWSON) who is a better talent & athlete than Dawson, to form a partnership with Dawson. The heart of defence needs stability & Dawson is the man NOW to provide it and he will.

  5. Dan Scott

    March 16, 2011 at 10:09 am

    I’ve watched a lot of spurs over the last 3 or 4 years and certainly over the last two watched Daws turn into a fine leader for tottenham. He is brave, determined, passionate and (Fulham aside) consistent. You know what you will get with Daws, he will win 85% of his headers, get in 2 crucial body on the line blocks, try at least four 150 yard raking passes to bale or lennon and will embrace gomes everytime gomes needs to feel loved. Like any most big centre backs he is sometimes clumsy, and if exposed against someone with pace he will get turned but these days with our expansive style of football Dawson and co have a very difficult job, with very little protection. For me personally Dawson is a reassuring presence we have a lot of wonderful, exciting wingers and forwards which is great but its not going to last. I like the fact that five or six years from now Dawson will probably be leading us out and he will be chuffed to be doing so. Would he play every week if King and Woodgate were fit? Ofcourse not but if King and Woodgate were fit everyweek they wouldn’t be playing for us. Dawson is our leader and I’m proud to have him. Spurs need a little bit of heart on your sleeve and thats -amidst the pace and flair and thrill of everyone else- Dawson give to tottenham.

  6. spur1950

    March 16, 2011 at 10:24 am

    seems you pricks from the bell and hare all you do allday long is critise you own players Probably if you were sober might see a differant game
    Why was daws player of the season !!!????
    And as for reading a game well u must be pissed!

  7. S C

    March 16, 2011 at 10:29 am

    THANK GOD SOME ONE ELSE HAS SEEN IT AT LAST HALLELUJAH.YOUR ARTICLE IS SPOT ON. THE COMMON DENOMINATOR FOR FAILURE IN THE DEFENCE IT IS DAWSON, SUPPOSE TO BE THE CAPTAIN (WHICH SHOULD GO TO GALLAS BY THE WAY) INSPIRES NO ONE HAS A 5 MIN WINDOW WHERE HE GOES MISSING EXAMPLE FULHAM DONT JUST BLAME HUTTON, WOLVES HIS MAN FLETCHER,HE CAN NOT READ GAME CAN NOT GENERAL HIS DEFENCE THANK GOD FOR GALLAS AGAINST MILAN HAVE A LOOK WHERE DAWSON WAS NO WEAR AND BEFORE YOU DAWSON LOVERS JUMP UP AND DOWN DO YOUR HOME WORK ON HIM,ASK YOUR SELFS WHY WE HAVE LEAKED SO MANY GOALS IN THE DEATH OF A GAME LOSSES CONCENTRATION. AS THE ARTICLE SAID IF HE WAS THAT GOOD SOME ONE WOULD BE IN FOR HIM AND YES WE DO HAVE SOME ELSE BETTER GIVEN HALF A CHANCE…

  8. Razspur

    March 16, 2011 at 11:42 am

    You are clearly a tortured soul, argueing only with yourself. What amazes me is how two passionate Spurs fans can watch a match and come out with widely opposing views on what they have just seen, is it due to differing expectations, level of understanding, or do we just see what we want to see no matter what. Daws is a lillywhite, not for sale, why expect or invite offers ?

  9. Not a fickle fan

    March 16, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    Everybody is entitled to their opinion but the shouting rant from SC is over the top. Dialike those who have to post in capitals to show the superiority of their point of view. Must also be the most illiterate post ever on thgius site. Dawson marshalls his defence in conjuction with Gallas. neither can general it ,whatever that means. Most moronic poinnt was the fact that nobody else has been in for him so presumably Van der Vaart ain’t much according to SC. It’s all very well to be critical but thses over the top, ill-thought out slagging off of one our own players epitomises why Spurs fans are deemd fickle by so many neutrals. Thanks for the ignomy upgrade SC.

  10. Pingback: Is Michael Dawson As Good As Spurs Fans Believe? | My celeb news blog

  11. JMSPUR13

    March 16, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    he has hardly any footballing ability, he can read a game fairly well, but can be caught out positionally, and also has a lack of PACE which can also lead to him being exposed. what he does have is 150% commitment, he puts his head in where it hurts and throws his body on the line for his team. he is strong and makes himself someone strikers dont like playing against. he makes the occasionaly error but when he does he is so dissapointed with himself that nothing anyone can do our say can make that worse. No im not talking about Daws, im actually talking about Carragher! my point is that Carragher has never been the greatest of footballers but he is still respected throughout the game. i personally think Daws has a lot more ability then carragher while still having the desire to throw himself infront of a speeding train if he thought it would help the team. i think we are expecting too much from Daws, he has always been a player that makes the basics look easy and the difficult seem impossible but the way he stepped up to the plate last year and dragged us through games at times shows how much he has improved. also based on your article Daws is probably 4th/5th choice CB, look at the other top teams, who can boast a 5th choice CB as good as Daws? Smalling/Evans/Brown at Utd currently arent as good (not that smalling & Evans dont have potential!) we all saw how badly Chelsea suffered when Alex & Terry were out so you’re looking at Ivanovic being their 4th choice and i rate Daws as good if not better then him at CB, Hes better then Squillachi at le scum & the spartan (kyriagopopodolpulous) at Liverpool. is there even any point comparing him to Boyatta at money-bags citeh? ive always thought people who assured me that daws was a future england captain were a little delusional but to completely disregard him as not being good enough for our squad is even more so!! i agree it is time to let King & Woody go, loan out Caulker & Khulumo to mid/lower prem teams for experience, keep Daws, Gallas & Kaboul, im afraid Bassong might be on his way out which is a shame because he does have potential (he reminds me a little of Kaboul in his first spell, eager & with tons of ability but just needs some composure!) bring in Cahill & 1 other (simply so i never have to see Corluka playing at CB again) then we will have 4/5 CBs top draw CB’s add that to the ridikulusly good Midfield we have & the big stiker (Drogba/Eto’o?? just a dream i know!) the only thing that could let us down is the charasmatic octopus between the sticks who we all know on any day can be up up there with the best or down there with the worst! what im really trying to say is accept that Daws will never be a Rio Ferdinand on the ball and accept him as our own Carra who will run through walls for us! sorry for the long reply but i got abit carried away after my first point!! COYS

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