Blunt Tottenham Hotspur Slip Up as Vitesse Arnhem Take the Points

Tottenham Hotspur slip up

Eredivisie side Vitesse Arnhem moved up to second in the Europa Conference League Group G in a game that saw Tottenham Hotspur slip up with a blunt performance. The defeat is Tottenham’s first in the competition after a win and a draw but the nature of the performance from the fringe players will not have been pleasing for Nuno Espírito Santo.

Tottenham Hotspur Slip Up In Europa Conference League

Fringe Players Fail to Step Up

Espírito Santo opted to rest the majority of his first-team players for the trip to Arnhem in a decision that badly backfired on the Spurs boss. Despite the likes of Son Heung-min and Harry Kane remaining in London, there was still Dele Alli, Ben Davies, Davinson Sanchez, Harry Winks and Steven Bergwijn on the field of play and that should have been enough, but no one seemed ready to setup up and take control of the game.

The partisan Vitesse crowd of 24,000 sensed an opportunity for a famous win and they deservedly scored the winner in the 78th minute through Maximilian Wittek.

Blunt Spurs

Tottenham’s only real chance of note came just after the halftime interval when Bryan Gil struck the bar in what was Spurs’ only effort on target.

Vitesse had more of the possession, more attacking intent and more creativity throughout the game and there will likely be no place for any of this starting line-up when Spurs return to Premier League action on Sunday, October 24 away to West Ham United.

Dele Alli’s Spurs Future Looks Bleak

Espírito Santo played Dele in his favoured number ten role but failed to repay the managers faith in him with a performance lacking in any guile, and his lack of confidence has left him looking at a future with little game time if he remains at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

His passing was wayward and he rarely looked like providing the kind of performance that he became known for in his first few seasons at Spurs. His fall from grace has been rapid and a change of fortune is needed if he is to get back to being a first-team regular. The days of being an England player are also looking unlikely to come his way any time soon.

Lack of Strength in Depth

It has been said before that for all the talent Tottenham have at their disposal, the lack of strength in depth has still not been rectified and this performance was another that further magnified the issues facing Espírito Santo.

The Europa Conference League was hardly Spurs’ main ambition this season but slipping to third puts extra pressure on the club to try and progress in what may be a chance to win a first trophy since 2008. After this performance, Espírito Santo will struggle to trust his fringe players to perform when needed and it’s an issue he will hope can be resolved sooner rather than later.

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