The introduction of Christian Eriksen from the bench yesterday was heralded as the reason why Tottenham got a 1-0 win at Burnley yesterday. Rightly so. The Dane did score the winner after all.
But one man whose impact from the bench cannot be underestimated is Fernando Llorente.
The Spanish striker has been in the news this week for courting interest from old flame Athletic Bilbao. Based on his latest cameo, he is an option Tottenham must keep at the club until the end of the season.
For all of Tottenham’s endeavour and guile, they could not break Burnley down yesterday. Three centre-backs worked brilliantly for Sean Dyche’s men and a point seemed the best Tottenham were getting.
However, Llorente offered an entirely new threat. His aerial ability is outstanding and he was involved in the build-up to the goal. Another knockdown should have been put away by Heung-min Son. Llorente was a throwback striker after coming on and it worked.
It is not the first time this season either. Llorente was pivotal to turning things around against PSV at Wembley. That result ultimately started their run into the Champions League knockout stages.
Tottenham fans are willing to change their mind if a player gets his head down and works for the club. Just look at the in-form Moussa Sissoko. Llorente is not looking like a Tottenham starter. But as an impact sub, he certainly appears to have a role to play at Tottenham…
And did anyone notice that Llorente drew two defenders to him as the ball came into the 18-yard box before the winner? Tactics, people. Tactics. Great 80th minute sub that opens space in the penalty area. Trust Poch, just trust him. #COYS #THFC
— mdknoll (@mdknoll) December 15, 2018
— Clive (@THBNBlog) December 15, 2018
— P. Scott Cunningham (@cunningpscott) December 15, 2018
Awful weather at Wembley today but it was worth it in the end. Skipp was good, neat and tidy. Davies played well out of position. Maybe unpopular but I would keep Llorente if we can’t get a top quality replacement, he literally wins everything in the air. #THFC
— Harvey (@Harvey_1612) December 15, 2018
Obviously the introduction of Eriksen proved key but one can’t underestimate the importance of Fernando Llorente today.
— Marc Benamram (@MarcBenamram) December 15, 2018
Wont get mentioned but Llorente was very handy when he came on. Influential in the goal and almost had an assist for Son.
— Hamid (@HamidTHFC) December 15, 2018
— Albert Bosley #FBPE #COYS (@AlbertTHFC) December 12, 2018
Llorente’s link up play (aka nodding the ball down to others from a cross) is really underrated.
— Zach (@TheTHFC) December 15, 2018
World Class flick on from the goat striker, Nando Llorente.
— . (@CH5thfc) December 15, 2018
Worth noting that goal doesn’t happen without the option of banging it up to Llorente ?♂️
Also Harry ‘all he does is score goals’ Kane coolness personified laying it off to Eriksen when he could’ve panicked and shot. Complete striker.
— Rob (@THFC_Rob16) December 15, 2018