Names such as ‘Bale FC’ have been unfairly bandied about the internet as an alternative to Tottenham Hotspur FC; it is clear that the mainstream view is that Gareth Bale carries Tottenham. In actual fact, Spurs have had a number of other good performers, who have arguably displayed more consistency than the Flying Welshman: new signings Hugo Lloris and Jan Vertonghen to name but two.
It is impossible to deny, however, that when Bale is at the peak of his form, he is simply unstoppable. Scintillating. Breathtaking. The 23 year-old has scored an incredible – for a midfielder – 22 goals this season in a shaky Tottenham side and has single-handedly brought them victories, for example at home to Newcastle when two moments of magic sent the Geordies away empty-handed. He said on Twitter that his personal highlights for the season were his superb solo goal at Carrow Road or his fine dipping effort in the last minute at Upton Park, snatching a 3-2 win for the Lilywhites.
But French goalkeeper Lloris deserves a lot of praise for his impact at the other end of the football pitch. Although it took him a while to displace the evergreen American Brad Friedel, he has now firmly grasped the role and his effect should not be undervalued. As well as dominating his penalty area at set pieces and being a very competent shot-stopper, he has also allowed Spurs to play with AVB’s favoured high line, and it has been successful, as only once have more than 2 goals in a game been conceded since the middle of November.
Finally, Belgian versatile defender Vertonghen has had a memorable first season in English football. A monstrous display of defending alongside Michael Dawson in the second North London Derby helped Spurs to the win and his 2nd minute goal at Old Trafford was a great moment at the other end of the pitch. Virtually ever-present, he has shown himself to be a cultured defender with a great eye for an attack.
Spurs have had an array of good performances this term. Sandro dominated the midfield before his injury in January; Jermain Defoe showed some great early season form; and Mousa Dembele has been the tempo-setter in the heart of the midfield. But Hugo Lloris, Jan Vertonghen, and particularly man-of-the-moment Gareth Bale, have particularly shone for the boys from White Hart Lane.