May 11, 2024

After a fantastic first half of the Premier League season, Tottenham Hotspur have fallen away slightly, and following the defeat to Liverpool on Sunday, there is a real chance the club could lose five on the bounce should Burnley get the better of them today.

Ange Postecoglou has done an admirable job, considering it’s his first year managing in England, but he’ll need to change something today if the Lilywhites are to have any chance of making the Champions League places come the season’s end.


One of the changes he should make is dropping Dejan Kulusevski for one of the club’s most dangerous attackers this season.

Dejan Kulusevski’s performance vs Liverpool

Now, there were several poor performers against the Reds last weekend, and as a result, a lot of changes could be made ahead of today’s game, but Kulusevski was arguably Spurs’ most disappointing attacker on Sunday, as Heung-min Son got on the scoresheet and Brennan Johnson provided an assist.

Dejan Kulusevski.

The Swedish international’s performance didn’t go down well among the press either, as’s Rob Guest awarded him a 4/10 on the day, writing that he ‘did very little in the final third’, which is a generous way to describe his performance.

In his 61 minutes of action, the 24-year-old didn’t take a single shot, produced an expected assists figure of just 0.01, failed in two of his three attempted dribbles, maintained a passing accuracy of just 85%, lost 50% of his duels, lost the ball ten times, and failed to make a single cross or play a single long ball.

Kulusevski’s game vs Liverpool in numbers
Minutes 61′
Goals 0
Assists 0
Expected Goals 0.00
Expected Assists 0.01
Shots (of any kind) 0
Touches 33
Duels (Won) 8 (4)
Dribbles Attempted (Successful) 3 (1)
Accurate Passes 19/22 (86%)
Key Passes 0
Possession Lost 10
Long Balls 0
Crosses 0
All Stats via Sofascore

In essence, the former Juventus star was practically anonymous, so he cannot start against the Clarets, especially as the team looked far more deadly when he came off.

The player who should replace Kulusevski

The man who should come in for Kulusevski today is Richarlison, as the Brazilian can slot in as the central striker, while Son moves back out on the left and Johnson moves to the right.


This might not be the ideal setup for Spurs in the long run, but it was the setup when the team finally started to look threatening against Liverpool on Sunday, and the former Everton ace was at the centre of it all.

In his short time on the pitch, he managed to take two shots on target and actually score a goal, and while he hasn’t had an unbelievable season, he has been reasonably effective when given the chance.

Spurs’ primary attackers
Players Son Richarlison Johnson Kulusevski
Appearances 33 31 31 36
Minutes 2699 1737 1976 2764
Goals 17 12 5 6
Assists 9 4 8 3
Minutes per Goal Involvement 103 108 152 307
All Stats via Transfermarkt for 23/24

In all, the “relentless” forward, as described by journalist Joe Strange, has scored 12 goals and provided four assists in just 31 games, or 1737 minutes. This is the second-best goal involvements to minutes ratio among the club’s primary attackers this season, behind only Son.

Ultimately, while Kulusevksi is a talented player and has shown as much in his time at the club, he was woefully ineffective against Liverpool last week, so he cannot start this time around, with the best alternative seeing Richarlison earn another start as the central striker.

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