Home » Stats highlight major Tottenham weakness that Postecoglou refuses to address

Stats highlight major Tottenham weakness that Postecoglou refuses to address

By Saikat -

Tottenham are in contention for a top-four finish and a win over Arsenal in the North London Derby would have been a huge boost. 

However, things didn’t really go according to plan as they lost 3-2 to their bitter rivals.

The Gunners took a 3-0 lead in the first half while Spurs did try to fight back, they fell short. There were a few positives for Ange Postecoglou’s team but the defeat did highlight a major weakness in the Australian’s team.

Tottenham have conceded 14 goals from set-pieces throughout the ongoing season, only the bottom four teams have conceded more highlighting the fact that something needs to change.

Arsenal’s use of Ben White to put pressure on the opposition goalkeeper during attacking set pieces has been a prominent talking point this season. Spurs had around two weeks to prepare for it.

Despite that, White managed to repeatedly pin Guglielmo Vicario, not allowing the Tottenham keeper to move out. The Gunners took advantage and scored twice from set-pieces on the night.

Last month, Postecoglou was asked about his team’s inability to deal with set pieces and the fact that they do not have a specific set-piece coach.

He said back then (h/t Optus Sport): “I’ve never had a specific set-piece coach . . . I always think it’s better if that’s somebody who’s a part of the coaching staff because then that’s an extension of how we play our football.

“I don’t separate set pieces from everything else we do. 

“It’s just not how I work. I always try to create a collective environment for everything we do, so that nothing is separated. I wouldn’t feel comfortable bringing in specialists for one particular area, just for the way I work more than anything else.”

After the North London Derby, he echoed similar thoughts: “If I thought fixing defensive set pieces was the answer to us bridging the gap then I’d put all of my time and effort into that.”

Clubs like Manchester City and Arsenal have a specialist set-piece coach and it has worked wonders for them. Despite struggling to deal with set pieces, Postecoglou doesn’t seem interested in the idea of having a specialist to help his team out.

The Australian manager has had a great first season at the club but to take the next step and fight for major titles, his team will have to make significant improvements. They have struggled to deal with dead-ball situations, and they have conceded way too many goals for a team that wants to fight for major titles.

While the numbers make it quite clear that they have a major problem dealing with set pieces, Postecoglou doesn’t seem willing to change his methods.

The former Celtic manager has had a decent start at Tottenham. But in order to survive in the Premier League, one needs to adapt and change according to situations. Postecoglou’s reluctance to change and not bring in a specialist coach could cost Spurs dearly.

If they want to compete with the best in the division, they will have to cut out their weaknesses. For now, teams will continue to exploit Tottenham’s vulnerabilities while dealing with balls coming into the box.

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