Bryan Gil excels in new role, shaky Gollini – 5 things spotted in Tottenham vs Pacos de Ferreira

New youngster involved

Nuno Espirito Santo’s Tottenham bench looked rather different for the Europa Conference League play-off second leg clash against Pacos de Ferreira.

Naming a very youthful squad last Thursday for the game in Portugal as he left a number of his first-team stars back in the capital, the likes of Dele Alli, Steven Bergwijn and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg were all included this time.

Clearly wanting to take no chances with a place in the group phase at stake, the boss did include a couple of youngsters on the bench, however, as Dane Scarlett, Maksim Paskotsi and Nile John were named.

The trio were joined by fellow academy ace Dilan Markanday, who was included on the bench back in February by Jose Mourinho for the Europa League home match against Wolfsberger AC.

The Spurs attacker didn’t get on that night but he is clearly doing something right at present to come into the head coach’s first-team plans.

Starting off the Premier League 2 campaign with four goals in two fixtures, including a hat-trick away at Leeds United on Monday, the 20-year-old has most definitely impressed Espirito Santo and was subsequently handed a first-team call-up as a reward.

Espirito Santo did say in his first Tottenham press conference that all players at the club are in his plans and that appears to be the case at present following the youngster’s inclusion.

Huge cheer for Kane

Harry Kane’s future is finally crystal clear following months of uncertainty.



Harry Kane celebrates scoring on his start for Tottenham against Pacos de Ferreira
Harry Kane celebrates scoring on his start for Tottenham against Pacos de Ferreira

Tipped to end his stay at Tottenham and join Man City in a big-money move, the England captain confirmed on Wednesday that he is indeed staying in the capital.

Receiving a great reception from the home faithful ahead of the match when he went to warm up, he was greeted by an even bigger cheer when his name was read out moments from kick-off.

Going so close to opening the scoring inside the first 20 seconds after Cristian Romero picked him out with a fine long ball over the top, the 28-year-old did have the ball in the net in the ninth minute after finishing well in the box from a Bryan Gil pass.

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Twenty five minutes later it came as no shock to see the England man double his tally for the night after some persistent work from Giovani Lo Celso.

Hopefully there will be plenty more goals from Kane for Tottenham between now and May.

Bryan’s new position

Bryan was handed his Tottenham debut in the first leg against Pacos de Ferreira and he showed fans in the first half just what he can bring to the team.

Causing problems for the Portuguese side with some excellent runs down the left flank, the Spaniard’s influence on the game waned after the break when he moved over to the right flank.

Espirito Santo was asked about the new signing in his post-match press conference and he did indicate that he does need to find the right position for the attacker.

Well, the head coach did hand the youngster a different role in the second leg as he started in the middle of a three playing behind Kane.

Involved a lot early on as he looked to get on the ball, the 20-year-old did have a key role in the opener as he picked out Kane in the box to find the net.

Later hitting the post and seeing an effort go over with deflected efforts, Bryan also had a shot that just arrowed wide of the post midway through the second half.

It was a very impressive home debut for Bryan and he looked right at home in his new role.

Shaky Gollini

Pierluigi Gollini returned to the Tottenham team on Thursday after playing in last Thursday’s 1-0 defeat at Pacos.

Handed his debut in the game in the first leg in Portugal following his summer switch from Atalanta, the shot-stopper didn’t exactly have much to do apart from pick the ball out of the net following Lucas Silva’s goal.

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Clearly coming across as a very confident person so far, the 26-year-old also appears to be exactly the same on the pitch.

Trying a Cruyff turn in the box early on despite finding himself under pressure from a Pacos player, the goalkeeper got it all wrong and unfortunately conceded a corner.

Luckily for Spurs it came to nothing.

The ex-Aston Villa also had a few more iffy moments in the first half as he looked a bit shaky at times, thus leaving a few Spurs fans rather concerned about his play.

However, after the break he looked a lot more assured on the ball, although it is worth pointing out that he was kept rather quiet with the hosts in total control of proceedings.

Gollini will get more minutes under his belt when the group phase begins next month.

Son boost

Tottenham were handed a bit of a scare last Sunday away at Wolves with Son Heung-min appearing to be carrying an injury.

Followed by the medical staff when he headed inside from his warm up a couple of minutes before the rest of his teammates exited the pitch, the South Korean was far from his best during his 70 minutes on the field at Molineux.

Wearing some strapping on his left hamstring, Son was approached by both Espirito Santo and Fabio Paratici after the game who were presumably just checking up on him.

Perhaps a game that would have been ideal for him to rest ahead of Sunday’s encounter against Watford, the 29-year-old was named on the bench to face Pacos de Ferreira and then came on for the final 18 minutes.

He was definitely showing no sign of injury as he buzzed about in the final third, going close to adding to the scoreline on a couple of occasions.

Following the scare on Sunday, it was exactly what Tottenham fans and Espirito Santo needed to see as the attacker impressed during his short time in the action.

Source by Football London

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