Spurs made to rue not securing £13m transfer in Leeds loss
What was so alarming about Tottenham Hotspur’s display at Leeds on Sunday was how each of Marcelo Bielsa’s players seemed to be at least a little bit better than each of those wearing green at Elland Road.
Leeds won their battles all over the pitch. And the man of the match could have arguably gone to almost any Whites player – with Hugo Lloris proving to be the only Spurs man to stake a claim.
But perhaps the man who provided the biggest surprise was Robin Koch, with the Germany international once again stepping in for Kalvin Phillips.
Koch is no stranger to the holding role. He has previously played there for his national team. And he was deployed there against Brighton in Leeds’s previous fixture, making his first start since December.
It did not prove to be the best day for the 24-year-old. Plenty of Leeds fans felt that he was their best player. But Phillips’s absence was certainly felt.
And that may have given Spurs confidence when they saw the England international had been left on the bench on Saturday.
He had previously shown that he is a centre-back with a lot of potential. And now that he has shown that he can impress against one of the most impressive front fours in a less familiar position.
Spurs made to rue failure to sign Koch
But it seems that Spurs may not have been surprised by Koch’s display.
Leeds signed the defender for just £13 million last summer. And according to Goal, one of the sides they beat to his signature was Tottenham.
Spurs have since endured a tough campaign defensively. Jose Mourinho struggled to settle on a regular centre-back pairing.
Meanwhile, Eric Dier endured a miserable time at Leeds on Saturday.
The defender Tottenham did sign last year for a similar fee to Koch – Joe Rodon – was not even in the match day squad.
Koch has now proved at Leeds that he can provide cover for arguably the most important player in the current squad, as well as play in his favoured position.
And his best display yet was saved for the side who reportedly missed out on his signature before his Elland Road switch.
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