Three reasons why Christian Eriksen should stay at Tottenham
Niall Griffits looks at why Spurs midfielder Christian Eriksen should stay amid reported interest from Juventus
One of Spurs’ key players
Eriksen has quickly become a fan favourite at White Hart Lane, and with good reason. For some he is the second coming of Rafael Van der Vaart, an advanced playmaker with flair, technical ability and a threat at set-pieces. Since his move from Ajax two years ago he has reached double figures in the scoring charts in two consecutive seasons, scoring 22 goals in 84 games for Tottenham. Eriksen is also 14 appearances away from the 100-game mark, a feat which show both the North London club’s reliance on the midfielder, as well as how highly they value him. While his assists stats have dropped off since his debut season, where he got 10 across all competitions, knowing he’ll continually be one of the first names on the team sheet will undoubtedly aid in his development over the course of this season. Will he be as key elsewhere? Juventus are rumoured to be sniffing around Eriksen and while the allure of Champions League will prove hard to ignore, there isn’t a better place for Eriksen to develop than at Tottenham at this moment in time.
Suits Pochettino’s style of play
While Eriksen is largely considered to be at his best at the advanced no. 10 role just behind the striker, the Dane has often found himself pushed out wide during his time at Spurs, a move which has often worked in Spurs’ favour. AVB’s rigid tactics, and his lack of a real “plan B”, often meant that Spurs played without much expression, with flair players like Eriksen appearing somewhat muted. When AVB was dismissed, Tim Sherwood opted for a tradiational 4-4-2, with Eriksen wide-left but told his players to play with more expressive freedom. The results were encouraging, with Eriksen scoring and assisting but rarely given his preferred role. Under Pochettino, Eriksen overall game has improved as he is expected to do a lot more off the ball, due to the Argentine coach’s preference of an energetic high-pressing game. Despite this reliance on pressing, he has still retained some of the freedom he had under Sherwood, with his 12 goal haul last season underlining that Eriksen and Pochettino’s philosophies work well together.
He’s settled and happy
Ever since the end of his first season at Tottenham Eriksen has been linked away to a plethora of Champions League suitors but whenever such rumours were posed to him in interviews, Eriksen has been keen to state that he is happy in North London. In fact, it is his agent Martin Schoots that has drummed up much of this transfer speculation, with the Dutchman claiming in recent days that he and his client know of “very big clubs” that are pining after Eriksen. This season is a big year for Tottenham, with the squad undergoing major revisions with the aim of progressing to the next level. With the signing of Toby Alderweireld, another Ajax alumni that played with Eriksen and fellow centre-half Jan Vertonghen, this will only help him feel more at home. Spurs reached their first major final for three years last season and claimed some very notable scalps in the league, but they are a team that need to improve as a whole and Eriksen will know that he is a major part of Pochettino’s vision for the foreseeable future.