Stellini, with a questionable substitution
Cristian Stellini’s record as an interim manager is no longer perfect. As great as assistant manager Cristian Stellini has been for Tottenham Hotspur since stepping in for Antonio Conte, he could have managed the match against Wolves better. Waiting until the 77′ to make a substitution when Wolves dominated the match saw criticism. But what saw more criticism was when Stellini took off Dejan Kulusevski for Lucas Moura.
Kulusevski didn’t have a bad day by any means, and maybe Stellini was thinking ahead for the upcoming Champions League clash with AC Milan. But it doesn’t make sense to bring on Lucas Moura, who has barely played this season due to injury, over Arnaut Danjuma, who has seemingly been punished for scoring a goal in the win against Preston North End back in January. I think most fans know what Lucas brings to the team. He may be a club legend in the hearts of many because of his hat trick heroics against Ajax in the Champions League. But with Lucas likely leaving at the end of the season, the decision to bring him on and not Danjuma is a head-scratcher.
While Lucas does have plenty of experience, Danjuma does as well, as he starred in Villareal’s Champions League run last season. Danjuma is also younger and could be considered a future player for the club and one for the present, as Tottenham Hotspur has the option to sign the Dutch forward for £27 million at the end of the season. But Tottenham, as it stands right now, will likely not sign him permanently because he hasn’t been able to show what he can do. Danjuma could very well be a solid option up front, but for some reason, he isn’t high up on the pecking order.
Despite a somewhat improved performance against Wolves, Tottenham Hotspur will rue the chances they missed, which could’ve seen them win by a few goals on a different day. Spurs’ top four hopes are still intact, but they missed a real opportunity to cement themselves when they dropped points. Tottenham’s next match is one of the biggest of the season when they host AC Milan in the Champions League on March 8, looking to turn around the 1-0 deficit in front of the home fans.