Tottenham Hotspur defender Serge Aurier played his first game of the season last weekend against Crystal Palace. It came after a frustrating summer where he could not secure a Spurs exit. But he is now back and in Mauricio Pochettino’s plans.
The situation at Tottenham has changed since the summer. Pochettino was perhaps ready to let Aurier leave this summer but he will have changed his mind. This situation is playing perfectly into the hands of Aurier, who is timing his resurgence to perfection.
Pochettino decided to try Davinson Sanchez in the right-back role against Olympiacos in the week. The 23-year-old Colombian is naturally a centre-back and it showed. He struggled with both the defensive and attacking aspects of his role, as well as keeping his position.
Sanchez was also used at right-back against Arsenal in the North London derby. These two games have surely taught Pochettino one lesson: Sanchez is not a right-back.
Pochettino played Sanchez at right-back even though he had Kyle Walker-Peters in his squad. Walker-Peters started the first three Premier League games of the season and looked like he had the right-back spot nailed on.
But Aurier’s resurrection has pushed Walker-Peters back down the pecking order. Pochettino’s trust in the 22-year-old Englishman has diminished – as seen from his decision to leave him on the bench in midweek.
Aurier hits form at right time
Both Sanchez’s struggles and the loss of faith in Walker-Peters have played into Aurier’s hands. The Ivorian defender produced a strong performance at Crystal Palace last weekend and he is surely in pole position to keep his place in the Premier League.
Pochettino rested Aurier in the week so he will be fresh for the trip to Leicester this weekend. The 26-year-old can completely reignite his Spurs career by producing another good performance and becoming the regular starting right-back.