Conte backed to replace unreliable Tottenham man with ‘standout’ star after Leicester mistake
A pundit reckons Antonio Conte will drop Davinson Sanchez and replace him with another Tottenham defender when club football returns, following a big error against Leicester City.
Tottenham beat Brendan Rodgers’ side 6-2 in their last game before the international break. The match saw Son Heung-min return to form in great style as he notched a hat-trick in just 14 minutes.
The forward had gone eight matches this season without registering a goal for Tottenham. This saw Conte put him on the bench against Leicester.
The tactic worked wonders as Son sent two great strikes past Foxes keeper Danny Ward and also finished off a sweeping Spurs counter attack.
Despite the scoreline suggesting an emphatic win for the north London club, it was not all plain sailing.
Conte’s men were 1-0 down inside 10 minutes as Youri Tielemans scored from the penalty spot. Sanchez had brought James Justin down in the box, forcing the referee to give a spot-kick.
Hugo Lloris guessed right and saved Tielemans’ first penalty, only for VAR to pull him up for having his feet off the goal line. As such, Tielemans re-took the penalty and scored.
Spurs took the lead through two set-piece goals, the first from Harry Kane and the second from Eric Dier. Rumoured Spurs transfer target James Maddison then dragged Leicester level with a great finish into the top corner.
Rodrigo Bentancur restored Spurs’ lead shortly after half time, and then it was the turn of Son to get among the goals.
While it was a successful day for Conte and his team, the challenge for Leicester’s penalty could end up costing Sanchez his place in defence.
Davinson Sanchez receives criticism
Pundit Noel Whelan reckons he’s ‘always got that challenge in him’ and that the manager should bring Cristian Romero back into the starting eleven.
“That’s a challenge which has been present since he came to Tottenham,” Whelan said during an interview with Football Insider.
“It’s an area of his game where he can be a bit lacklustre. He charged in like a bull.
“He can be so fantastic during a game but he’s always got that challenge in him. The player was going nowhere, and it was just a rash decision.
“It could’ve hurt Tottenham, but they bounced back quite quickly.
“I was surprised to see Romero on the bench. I think it’s an area of the field where you can’t have a player like him sat on the sidelines. He’s been the standout defender since he came into the football club.
Defender makes Conte selection ‘very easy’
“I think Sanchez has made Conte’s decision very easy for the next game.”
Romero has had to deal with an injury towards the start of the current season, which explains why he was not a guaranteed start against Leicester.
But the 24-year-old is on his way back to full fitness and should be eligible to start for Spurs once they return to Premier League action. Conte starting him in defence, alongside Dier and Ben Davies, would make sense as this appears to be the most reliable back three.
Sanchez, meanwhile, has two years left to run on his Spurs deal. He has proven to Conte that he cannot be trusted to go a full match without making a big mistake.
As such, it wouldn’t come as a shock if Spurs allowed him to leave in one of the next few transfer windows. They already have strong options in defence, anyway.
Meanwhile, a big-money Man Utd player has confessed to being ‘very angry’ when a switch to Spurs fell through in 2019.