Crooks questions Son Heung-min playing against Brentford
Garth Crooks has told BBC Sport that he questions whether Son Heung-min should have been playing when Tottenham Hotspur faced Brentford on Boxing Day – due to the fact that he was wearing a face mask.
Spurs played out another frustrating game on Monday. Once again, Antonio Conte’s men conceded the opening goal – for the ninth game running now – and needed to come from 2-0 down to earn a point against the Bees.
Harry Kane and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg got Tottenham back on level terms. But it was certainly another occasion where Conte will have been left scratching his head wondering what is happening with his side.
Crooks questions Son starting for Tottenham at Brentford
Some of the players were definitely not at the races. And Son was one of those who did not make much of an impact during the contest.
It has been a frustrating season for the forward. He has actually only scored in one Premier League game this term. And of course, he suffered a serious facial injury during their Champions League clash with Marseille before the World Cup.
He has worn a mask for club and country since. But Crooks believes that it is not a good idea to pick him if he is still recovering.
“Tottenham started Monday’s match at Brentford like England started against the USA in their second World Cup game: no conviction, no passion and no goals,” he told BBC Sport.
“Son Heung-min was wearing a face mask which made me question, if he was so concerned about an injury, whether he should have been on the pitch in the first place. Meanwhile, Eric Dier was slashing at balls as if it was his first training session after a pre-season break.”
Crooks’ criticism of the decision to pick Son seems so strange. Of course, the mask will come with some limitations. However, plenty of players have been absolutely fine playing while wearing one.
In fact, Josko Gvardiol really launched himself onto the world stage playing for Croatia at the World Cup. And throughout the tournament, he was wearing a mask.
Son’s form is a worry for Tottenham. Three goals and two assists is an underwhelming tally for a player with the £22 million star’s quality. But he will not be blaming the mask for the fact that he struggled to make an impact at the Gtech Community Stadium.