Tottenham 2020/21 Season Preview: Strengths, Weaknesses, Key Man & Prediction

As Amazon refreshes our memories of what was a tumultuous 2019/20 campaign for Tottenham, here at 90min, we're looking ahead.

The 2020/21 Premier League season is less than two weeks away as Jose Mourinho looks to build on a decent - if dull - conclusion to the previous term with a statement start amid a relatively tame opening two months of league fixtures.

Travelling to all corners of the continent in the process certainly won't help their cause, mind.

Nevertheless, with one of the finest string-pullers the game's ever seen at the helm - outdated or not (he isn't) - confidence will surely be high in N17 for a fruitful campaign this time around, with a return to the Champions League - and perhaps some silverware - a realistic goal despite signs that the competition is only getting stronger.


Talent & New-Found Balance

With the talent they possess, this was a Spurs side that simply shouldn't have finished sixth in the Premier League last time out.

A plethora of factors went into the club's and Mauricio Pochettino's demise last term; from individual errors to a feeling of staleness, but the talent remained.

Harry Kane, Son Heung-min, Dele Alli, and Toby Alderweireld were joined by big-money arrivals Tanguy Ndombele and Giovani Lo Celso in the summer, while Steven Bergwijn joined in January. A pretty decent squad, eh?

But this was a Lilywhite unit distinctly lacking balance - mainly due to the lack of a defensive midfielder and an impulsive, inefficient Ivorian down one flank - issues they've sought to solve in the summer window by drafting in Premier League proven duo Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Matt Doherty.

With these two additions, Mourinho will certainly feel he's blessed with a more harmonious and flexible squad.


Low Blocks

Mourinho's emphasis on a 'defensive process' after the restart and it's successful execution by the Spurs backline has convinced us he'll continue to get the best out of the Lilywhite defence this time around - especially following the additions of Hojbjerg and Doherty.

Nevertheless, Mourinho will have to ensure his continued emphasis of defensive security doesn't come at the detriment of Spurs' attacking fluidity - even if his direct approach has led to examples of spellbinding transitional play since his arrival.

The Portuguese string-puller's main challenge will be the games in which Spurs are expected to be the protagonist. When they're likely to be tasked with breaking down a deep defensive block.

Mourinho's 3-2-4-1 attacking set-up saw Spurs overwhelm opponents during his honeymoon period before key injuries and shrewder defences saw their attacking play stagnate - using Serge Aurier, and only Aurier, as a primary outlet down the right certainly didn't help.

Fixtures after the restart proved Spurs' effectiveness against sides that'll take the game to them, but José will have to conjure up more innovative solutions against inferior opposition.

Key Man

Spearheading a second Dele Alli resurgence or facilitating a Tanguy Ndombele remontada will both be pivotal for Mourinho next term, but his key man undoubtedly remains Harry Kane.

As the pre-match shenanigans prove, Kane's a man who leads by example rather than motivating words and if they want to secure a top-four berth in 20/21, he'll have to be fit for much - if not all - of the campaign. Cover for their hitman is said to be Spurs' priority target in the remainder of the transfer window.

It's not just his goals, playmaking capacity or leadership, but the importance of his overall function in what was often an asymmetric 4-2-3-1 for Mourinho last time around can't be understated.

Nevertheless, it has the makings of another prolific campaign for the England skipper after concluding 19/20 with five goals in three games.


You've got to be optimistic, right?

This is a Spurs side which is still a work in progress but also not too far off from something quite brilliant - they're still probably a dominant centre-half away from being considered anything close to title challengers under Mourinho.

Nevertheless, with José discovering his big-game formula and their squad becoming just that little bit deeper and more balanced this summer, a top-four finish certainly shouldn't be written off - but don't expect it.

Prediction: Top 6

Source : 90min