One thing you have to understand about Mauricio Pochettino’s system is that it is precisely that—a system. It only works if all 11 players are working as a unit with each player fulfilling his role within the larger tactical approach. When one player fails, the whole thing tends to break down. That’s largely what happened with Tom Carroll in yesterday’s game.
Carroll is not a bad player, necessarily, but the last season and a half has provided us with strong evidence that he is not a Mauricio Pochettino player. His lack of size and occasional indecisiveness on the ball make him a uniquely bad choice for a system that requires an extremely physical take on high pressing combined with quick decision making and fast ball movement.
Tom Carroll is not cut out to play in such a system. Or at least he hasn’t shown any evidence so far that he is able to play in it—and given that we’re in year three of the Pochettino era and Carroll is now 24 (only three months younger than Christian Eriksen, in fact!) it’s likely that he won’t be given many more shots to prove that he can cut it. Don’t be surprised if, come January, Carroll is loaned out to a bottom half Premier League side chasing survival.
On to the links:
Brazilian legend Carlos Alberto passed away earlier this week. Howler remembers his most famous goal.
It was a bad day for America’s second division, the NASL, as two of their clubs left for the USL.
It’s time to stop worrying and learn to love RB Leipzig.