Toby Alderweireld’s form at Tottenham Hotspur has been somewhat concerning in recent times.
The 31-year-old was arguably below his usual standards last term as Spurs had real difficulty keeping the ball out of the net.
Many have felt that the Belgium international might be starting to decline.
His age would suggest that he is perhaps on the way out of his prime.
Against Burnley on Monday though, Alderweireld really stood up to be counted for, producing an immense performance at the back which was like watching the Alderweireld of old.
He had finished the game with more blocks, clearances and headed clearances than anyone else, and even shed blood for the cause which saw him finish the game bandaged up.
It was a warrior-like display, and the kind that Jose Mourinho has really needed from one of his central defenders of late.
TBR’s View – Alderweireld has to build on his Burnley display
Under Mourinho, Spurs have been worryingly flaky at the back which is a surprise given the Portuguese’s old reputation.
Alderweireld’s form last term was a bit of a worry, but the £80,000-a-week star’s (Spotrac) performance against Burnley shows he can still be top quality.
Jan Vertonghen really struggled towards the end of his stint with Spurs, and Spurs can’t afford Alderweireld taking the same path.
He’s been their best defender on paper for the longest time, and it’s vital now for him to build on his performance against Burnley and start dominating at the back once again.