Tottenham cannot sit back waiting to counter-attack Everton

Tottenham cannot sit back waiting to counter-attack Everton

Tottenham Hotspur cannot sit deep in a low block, looking to counter-attack versus Everton if Spurs are taking three points Monday night. 

Over the last several weeks, the hard-working, strong-passing team initially emerged under Antonio Conte has gone into hibernation. Instead of that team, we have had a team sitting deeper defensively, hoping to make a play. The Tottenham team running more than any other team has disappeared, and now Spurs are scrambling more than they are running.

To avoid a similar situation as Burnley and Middlesbrough in two of the last three matches – where a lesser team dominated the pace of play – Tottenham cannot sit back and wait for Everton. Spurs must be the aggressor.

Everton is wounded; Tottenham must press on that injury

Looking to avoid an all-out relegation scrap and likely angry from being robbed of a clear penalty and a shot at a draw against Manchester City last weekend, Tottenham should expect a game and gritty Everton team.

The Toffees will be organized and work hard under Frank Lampard but have tasted defeat a lot this season. Most teams with 14 losses in 24 games are playing while looking for the next shoe to drop. Tottenham cannot allow Everton’s confidence to build and must take away the Toffees’ hope of taking any points on the road.

If this team is going to achieve anything and start to grow under Conte, they cannot continue to make the same mistakes and gives teams that should not have hope the glimmer they need.

Spurs defence needs more offense

Hopefully, Conte is beginning to realize that while his team can muster up the intensity and fortitude to play 90 minutes of defence and beat Manchester City, that approach needs to be the exception more than the rule.

Although many goals are not counter-attacks under Conte, the time of possession is not something like what we would see under Pep Guardiola or Jurgen Klopp. Conte is more like Jose Mourinho, taking a more conservative approach to football than expansive like Guardiola and Klopp.

Unfortunately, as fans know, the players at N17 lack the discipline and character to play a defense-first style regularly. Instead, to get the best out of the team and help avoid mistakes without the ball, Tottenham must do a better job controlling possession for more extended periods.

More time in possession does not mean Spurs cannot have quick and cutting moves, although Tottenham needs to move the ball quicker and with more purpose overall. The reality is if Spurs are spending less time playing defence, they are less likely to make a mistake.

If Tottenham can control possession and jump on Everton early, they can put away a team hoping for something good to happen. However, if Spurs sit off the ball and let Everton build the confidence they need to make their luck, well, we all know what the result will be. Hopefully, Conte has.

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