December 7, 2023

Bryan Gil’s time at Tottenham may be running out, and after yet another appalling performance the previous time out, he will have to be benched for Thursday’s match against West Ham.


After a challenging first half, Spurs trailed 2-1 against Manchester City, the defending Premier League champions, at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, December 3. In a thrilling match, the teams ended in a 3-3 draw.


Ange Postecoglou lined his team up to compete with the champions despite having a severely diminished squad, and it was a decision that proved to be extremely wise for Tottenham.



Despite the intensity and caliber of the opposition, Postecoglou’s tendency to always press high, crave possession, attack widely with rotations, and commit full-backs into advanced, central attacking positions was evident to all and proved to be quite admirable.


Given that Spurs’ xG (expected goals) total from the match was only 0.46 (SofaScore) compared to City’s 2.57, the outcome was unexpected, but Spurs exceeded that number with amazing skill.


Nevertheless, it means that the Lilywhites have now lost five straight Premier League games. As a result, the North Londoners must now prepare for yet another pivotal match on Thursday, December 7, when they play West Ham, a rival team in London.


In order to guarantee that his team wins its first three games since the victory at Crystal Palace at the end of October (October 27), Postecoglou may be preparing for one significant change.


One significant change may be the inclusion of winger Gil, who surprised everyone by starting against the Premier League champions but did not seize the opportunity.


Due to the Spurs’ injury problems, Bryan was forced to start.


Tottenham (HTC)

The 22-year-old, who missed the majority of the season due to injury, had hardly kicked a ball all season. He only played 16 minutes of football before getting started against Aston Villa and City.


The former Sevilla loanee made little indication against the Villans that Postecoglou could rely on him for long term.


Despite starting on the left wing against a defense that allows goals away from home, the Spaniard only managed an xG of 0.09, according to stats provided by Sofascore. Additionally, the fact that his expected assist stat was only 0.04 indicates that he did not contribute any originality.


Although Bryan’s pass accuracy of 86% was impressive, it simply goes to show that the Spaniard was always going for the safe pass rather than attempting to find a teammate with a riskier one.


In addition, he gave up one goal, lost possession thirteen times, and succeeded on three of his four dribble attempts.


The game against City was similar in that the young player committed a few cheap giveaways while in possession, but his attacking influence was what could have forced  Ange Postecoglou Axe him against the Hammers, Postecoglou.


Gil was substituted for Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg at halftime after spending 45 minutes on the field and losing 100% of his dribbles, 100% of his ground duels, failing to complete any crosses or crucial passes, and losing possession six times.


There were multiple moments in the first half that demonstrated how easily Spurs could have won three points if Gil had the necessary poise and attacking ability.


Son Hueng-Min played in the Spaniard just before halftime with a brilliant team move.




The Spaniard squared up to Kyle Walker and might have easily played a cross-field pass for Brennan Johnson, who was closing in on the other end.


However, Gil strangely opted against the decision much to the dismay and annoyance of his Welsh teammate.



Spurs are clearly reaching exceptional levels under Postecoglou tactically as shown by their performances against the elite like Liverpool, Arsenal and Manchester United already in the Premier League this season.

For those levels to be maintained and built upon, Postecoglou simply has no room for players who he feels can hold them back tactically and Gil’s performances over the last two games have shown the threat his lack of quality poses to their development.


That’s why against West Ham, it won’t be a surprise to see the little Spaniard axed at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. It could be the difference between a disappointing result and a crucial and comfortable win.

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