How To Solve A Problem Like Soldado?
As we gear up for Tottenham Hotpur’s huge clash with Manchester City on Sunday, The Spurs Blogger looks at how to try and get best out of Roberto Soldado.
As we gear up for Tottenham’s huge clash with Manchester City on Sunday, The Spurs Blogger looks at how to try and get best out of Roberto Soldado.
So, despite contributing four goals and two assists for our mere nine Premier league goals this season, Robbie Soldado has been criticised for not offering enough of an attacking outlet for the team, but I personally don’t believe the Spaniard has done anything wrong.
When at Valencia, Robbie played as more or less their only attacking outlet, I’m not saying they played route one, but whenever a Valencia man got on the ball, his head would go up and he’d search for Soldado, and he flourished, becoming renowned for his one touch finishing, earning his £28 Million move to Spurs in the summer.
But he isn’t receiving a similar service whilst playing for us. He’s 28 years old now, and his style of play has done well for him throughout the years, so we cannot expect him to change so late in his career. We signed him to be a finisher, which he can’t be if he isn’t getting the correct service.
We play a 4-2-3-1 formation, therefore the ‘1’ should have plenty of support from the ‘3’ and occasionally from one of the ‘2’, but our players don’t seem to be playing in this way. We have Andros Townsend and Gylfi Sigurdsson as our ‘wide’ men, but they seem to believe their job is to just cut in and shoot at any given opportunity.
I’m not so worried about Andros doing this, as he has Kyle Walker overlapping and taking advantage of the space created when the left full back follows Townsend inside, but Gylfi doesn’t currently have an attack-minded full back behind him. He has Jan Vertonghen, who isn’t exactly best pleased with playing there, and is more comfortable playing in the middle.
Due to these men cutting in, it leaves no room for the middle man, either Eriksen or Holtby, to work, causing them to have to drop further back to find space. But this in turn takes away one of Soldado’s main creators. So is it as simple as keeping the wingers out wide? Potentially, yes. Introduce Aaron Lennon into the equation, but play him wide right, with Townsend on the left, considering he is left footed, may actually stay at the by-line.
The other alternative is to recall Emmanuel Adebayor. I’ve spoken about the 4 assists he got against Newcastle, when played as a second striker. He even made Louis Saha look like a half decent striker. Just to have a tall lump for Soldado to play off would be perfect for him. Either way, something does need changing, and hopefully soon.
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