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Sunday, 18 December 2016

Isn't it good to have our centre-backs together again

Alderweireld-and-Vertonghen

Our central defensive partnership is back together. We have missed the pair of them playing together against out top four rivals and Toby Alderweireld being missing after a freak injury has made a difference. Eric Dier is a decent replacement but against the best his positional errors and awareness are occasionally exposed. That is all it takes though to make a difference and we have paid the price.

“From day one it went well. It just felt good. We didn’t always play together because sometimes Jan played in midfield. Martin Jol eventually gave us the chance to play together at Ajax and it worked. I was 19 and he was 21, so I leaned a bit on him, but it was a great process for me. 
“At Ajax they don’t worry about your age. If you’re good enough, you play. It was a young partnership, but we were twice champions of Holland together so, yeah, it was good. 
“At Tottenham we try to play the pressing game, to play very high, and we played that way at Ajax as well. We’re both not slow and we can both play the ball. We had our education in the Ajax academy, so we were brought up the same way. That helps. 
“We trust each other. We try to help each other. We’re not selfish. It’s a partnership. We know we have to do the job together. It’s not just about Jan and me, by the way. It’s also about the full backs, the goalkeeper, the midfielders and the whole team. 
“But, yeah, Jan and I work together. We talk about the striker we’re playing against, how we’re going to play. We talk a lot about what we’re going to do.”

Ledley King
"I think they're well rounded, both of them, so they don't have any obvious weaknesses. Sometimes you can get someone who is very good in the air, very physical but not so great with the smaller, nippy players. They can deal with all types of forwards."

Jermaine Jenas
"They're a good size as well. They're not huge but because they've got such athleticism anything in the air doesn't trouble them. A big part of it is balance with Jan being left footed and Toby being left footed."

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