December 31, 2023

When Tottenham Hotspur takes on Bournemouth on Sunday afternoon, Ange Postecoglou will have to make some important selections.


Tottenham had one of their poorest performances of the year on Thursday, losing 4-2 against Brighton.


Spurs had a good amount of opportunities during the game and even had a chance to rally late in the game after falling down 4-0.


However, Ange Postecoglou’s team’s defense finally let them down that evening, giving up two unnecessary penalties.


Following his hamstring injury against Everton last weekend, Cristian Romero is expected to miss four weeks of action, therefore Tottenham was without him.


Postecoglou selected Ben Davies and Emerson Royal as his center-back duo. However, it’s reasonable to conclude that the two—Royal in particular—struggled at the Amex Stadium.


Additionally, we think Ashley Phillips ought to start today against Bournemouth at center back.


Premier League match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Tottenham Hotspur

Phillips will undoubtedly receive his Tottenham debut from Postecoglou against Bournemouth.

Over the summer, Phillips was acquired from Blackburn Rovers at a reported £3 million.


Although the 18-year-old hasn’t yet made his Spurs debut, he has been making an impression at Hotspur Way behind the scenes.


Dejan Kulusevski has stated that Phillips is prepared to play football with the first team, in fact.


Additionally, it has been reported that the defender has impressed Postecoglou throughout this season’s training.


Premier League match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Tottenham Hotspur


With Romero out of commission and Micky van de Ven hurt, Phillips appeared to have a chance to play again in November. However, the Englishman suffered an ankle injury at the most inconvenient time.


Thus far, Postecoglou has said that he would rather have Emerson Royal at center back than players like Eric Dier and Phillips. However, following Royal’s lackluster defensive performance on Thursday, it seems appropriate for the Australian manager to experiment with a fresh approach in center defense.


Despite Phillips’ lack of elite experience, Spurs’ lineup against Brighton clearly lacked a recognized central defender.


Postecoglou taking the risk of starting Phillips against a Bournemouth team that is winning would be very risky. Nevertheless, it also seems like the perfect time for the “phenomenal” young player to accrue some playing time, whether it be starting or coming off the bench.


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