Without playing a minute, he has already shot up the pecking order and enhanced his value to the team. The insipid play of our midfield on Sunday and general failure to create a real clear cut chance in open play despite dominating possession in all our three league games to date is largely down to the lack of a playmaker in our central midfield, and Eriksen will hopefully address that issue.
Back with a fantastic strike from outside the box. The German international was as industrious as ever, and looked impressive in the number 10 role. If more players were on his wavelength the better.
Rumours of a loan move might be squashed after this week’s events. An incisive passing display on Thursday, Villas-Boas may decide to keep one of his few real playmakers in the squad.
Subbed at half time in midweek showed how his reputation has enhanced as he was saved for the derby, and he was our most dangerous attacking weapon at the weekend. Not a lot of competition for that title, granted, but he was the one player on Sunday who looked like he could create something, even if it was just a shooting opportunity for himself.
Whether AVB will stick with him or automatically go for his new signings, despite how effective they might be, will set the precedent for a lot of our players.
Two goals against admittedly limited opposition should secure his spot as first reserve for Soldado. Let’s hope he is happy with cup football.
One of the few players to come out of Sunday’s game in credit.
90 minutes on Thursday, sub appearance on Sunday, and the chance, depending on Capoue’s injury, of an extended run in the side.
We don’t begrudge him a transfer record move to Real Madrid, but there is a way to go about it, and being a bit of a twat is not the way.
Daniel Levy and Franco Baldini
They won a lot of plaudits for their transfer moves so far, so they will not have been pleased to see the team so woefully short when in possession. Cue a load of headlines saying money doesn’t buy you success, or love...
One loss away from home is not the end of the world, but it is a little worrying that we faced the same problems creating chances this week as we did a fortnight ago. We looked very pedestrian, with even passes between our centre backs being slow and lacking any intent. Perhaps we are trying to save energy now to avoid a late season collapse?
It was also worrying to see that our pace on the counter seems to have disappeared. There is no clear direction, not enough people breaking forward, and too often we end up turning back and allowing the opposition to regroup.
Also, sort out our set pieces ffs! I’m not asking for goals, just get one of our players within five yards of the cross!
Out of the three midfielders that started against Woolwich, Dembele’s position is the one up for grabs. Subbed for the fourth game in a row he has started, again we must question what the Belgian is bringing to this side. It’s not passing, it’s not a forward thrust, and its not goals or assists.
Capoue will surely be replaced by Sandro in a like for like move, Paulinho offers drive and forward runs into the box, and Dembele is just making up the numbers at the moment. Eriksen will come in (and it’s arguable Holtby or Carroll should also move ahead in the pecking order).
Moussa used to get the ball, jinx past a player and move us up the pitch, but we are so slow with the ball that even if he does take a man on, there is just another one waiting. Maybe a passer next to him would help, but after initially shining in a Spurs shirt his performances are becoming increasingly anonymous.