Pundit: This Tottenham defender has been absolutely fantastic

Ex-Spurs forward Garth Crooks singles out Tottenham centre-half Toby Alderweireld for special praise

Garth Crooks says Toby Alderweireld has been absolutely fantastic in the Tottenham Hotspur side after Saturday afternoon’s 4-0 win against West Bromwich Albion.

The Belgium international returned to Mauricio Pochettino’s side for their 1-0 loss to Manchester United at Old Trafford in December after the centre-half’s two-month absence due to a knee injury.

Alderweireld has made 13 appearances in the 2016-17 Premier League season so far, helping the north London side to keep the best defensive record in the English top flight in the current campaign.

Pochettino’s side have managed to keep back-to-back clean sheets which means the Tottenham defence have only conceded 14 times in 21 games.

Writing in his BBC Sport column after Tottenham’s 4-0 win against West Brom on Saturday afternoon, Crooks singled out underrated Alderweireld’s influential performance in the Spurs back four.

“Did anyone see the ball Toby Alderweireld played for Kyle Walker in the first half?” Crooks said.

“Sadly, the move came to nothing but that wasn’t the point. This player has been absolutely fantastic for Tottenham this season in every conceivable department.

“I admit West Brom weren’t at their best, but Alderweireld still had to deal with the threat of Matt Phillips and Salomon Rondon.

“I could have selected David Luiz, Gary Cahill or Cesar Azpilicueta for Chelsea’s impressive clean sheet away at Leicester in difficult circumstances, but what I find extraordinary about Alderweireld is that his performances often go unnoticed. Well, not so here, and he makes my team of the week once again.”

Tottenham are in second place in the Premier League table and seven points adrift of leaders Chelsea.

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Spurs will make the trip to title challengers Manchester City in their next Premier League fixture at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday evening.

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