By 90Min
November 05, 2019

It's Sunday 3 November. Roughly 16:00 BST.

We've already had the team news, and I, as the rubbish Tottenham fan that I have become, am rushing back from Gatwick to get home in time for the clash against Everton at Goodison Park.

I get into London Victoria just as the first half kicks off, and submit myself to the torture that is traversing the London Underground.

Thankfully, one can access a fair amount of WiFi at most stops along the Central line.

Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/GettyImages

So, as any good fan does, I turn on goal notifications for the game on my phone, and sit on the Spurs Twitter account, refreshing every minute looking for any kind of update.

It takes 29 minutes for Tottenham's social media team to provide their first description of the game, with a noteworthy chance falling the way of Everton midfielder Andre Gomes.

Evidently, there isn't much to report on.

But, when I flick on to my Twitter home feed, there are a fair few upset Spurs fans laying into one player, and one player in particular.

Christian Eriksen.

The modern fan loves a good stat, and there are a fair few being thrown around about Eriksen's performance. He's hardly set the world alight this season, and it doesn't appear like he's bothered about securing the move to one of Europe's giants that he so clearly desires.

When I eventually wander into my flat in east London just in time for the second half, I'm rather shocked to see the Dane still on the pitch. And his performance, which was being so vividly described by Spurs fans, was indeed appalling.

Now, we clearly can't blame Christian Eriksen for all that's gone wrong so far this season in north London. Players go through dry spells, and there are other clear systemic issues at Tottenham.

But his display against Everton was consistent with what Tottenham fans have become accustomed to seeing over the past year. Too often slow with the ball at his feet around the penalty area, seemingly unable to press and tackle at a high intensity, and lacking any kind of set-piece pedigree that made him such a highly thought of youth prospect.

Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/GettyImages

Eriksen will leave next summer. Unless there is some kind of extraordinary U-turn in contract talks, this is the last season the former Ajax star will spend at Tottenham.

Which begs the question: why the persistence from manager Mauricio Pochettino? Why bother with Eriksen's regular involvement in the starting XI? Why persist with a player who is either embarrassingly out of form or who has downed tools for the year?

Especially when the ready-made replacement is staring you dead in the face, kitted out in a full tracksuit and bib, sitting on the bench.

Giovani Lo Celso has been given little chance so far by Pochettino. The Spurs manager is renowned for giving his new signings as long as possible before blooding them into the first team, with Tanguy Ndombele an anomaly during Pochettino's time at the club.

When Lucas Moura signed in January 2018, he had to make do with substitute appearances and domestic cup matches before getting a proper crack at the whip the following season. There seems to be a checklist that needs all of its criteria ticked off before Pochettino finally gives the green light.

Well, that checklist may have to be chucked out the window, given how lifeless Tottenham were in attack against Everton, and given how lifeless Eriksen, the supposed creator-in-chief, has been so far this term.

The time is right for a change. A change that will show Tottenham fans that the management is looking towards the future. A change that will see things improve sooner rather than later.

Lo Celso can help Spurs rediscover their old pressing threat. What the Argentina international has displayed during his brief substitute appearances is his thirst to hunt down opposition ball-carriers and win possession back for his side.

Now, with fans calling for Eriksen's head and Son Heung-min a doubt for the game against Red Star Belgrade on Tuesday after his unintentional involvement in the horrific injury suffered by Gomes, the time is right for Lo Celso to be thrusted into the starting XI.

TF-Images/GettyImages

Harry Kane will hopefully be fit after missing the Everton game through illness, and it makes sense, given all the variables at play, to start building the relationship between the side's main goalscorer and the player who will tasked with creating chances.

That means cutting the cord with Eriksen, Unai Emery style. Bring him on as a fresh pair of legs when Spurs are 4-0 up in the 75th minute - if any such scenario occurs ever again.

But if Spurs are to start this 'painful' rebuild that Pochettino mentioned during the summer, then his team selection must reflect that policy. Players who are committed to the project must be trusted to perform, rather than old favourites whose time has been and gone.

It's time for revolution. It's time for radical and uncompromising change. It's time for a Labour govern- I mean it's time for Giovani Lo Celso.


For more from Jude Summerfield, follow him on Twitter!

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