Former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Jermaine Jenas has called on Mauricio Pochettino to drop Hugo Lloris following the Frenchman’s Liverpool clanger.
Spurs looked set to secure a hard-fought point at Anfield but a late Lloris fumble caused Toby Alderweireld to deflect the ball into his own net, ensuring maximum reward for the title-chasing Reds on Sunday.
Should Spurs drop Lloris? Five key things to know…
- Hugo Lloris has been Tottenham’s no.1 goalkeeper since signing from Lyon in 2012.
- The Frenchman has proven a formidable shot-stopper but is often prone to mistakes.
- Earlier this season Lloris put pressure on Spurs in the Champions League group stages after his red card error allowed PSV to draw 2-2.
- Paulo Gazzaniga has often stepped in during the absence of Lloris and largely impressed with his efficiency between the sticks.
- Since the start of last season only Asmir Begovic (eight) has suffered more errors leading to goals than Lloris (six) in the Premier League.
This was not the first mistake in Lloris’ career, and won’t be the last according to Jenas, who challenged Pochettino “to be ruthless” and instate Paulo Gazzaniga into his starting XI at the expense of the Frenchman.
In his BBC Sport column, Jenas wrote: “Lloris seems to have a reputation based on what he has done in the past that is bigger and better than his current level, and that is a difficult scenario for his manager to deal with.
“But I don’t think Pochettino will be afraid of dropping Lloris, and what might make it easier for him is having Paulo Gazzaniga as his back-up.
“Gazzaniga has played a few games for Spurs this season – 10 in total in all competitions – and has been brilliant every time I’ve seen him. He is probably thinking ‘it is time for me to get my opportunity’ and I think he should do.
“As ruthless as it sounds, if I was Pochettino I would seriously be considering starting the Argentina international in Wednesday’s game against Crystal Palace.”
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Jenas: Forget about sentiment
Lloris has been a key player for Spurs since relocating to the capital seven years ago, but Jenas has told Pochettino to put emotions and sentimental attachment to one side when he picks his team for their first match at their new stadium on Wednesday.
As such, Jenas believes Lloris, who is currently the club’s 10th-highest leading appearance maker of all time, should potentially not be present – on current form – when that new era begins in north London.
He added: “I know it is a huge occasion because it is Tottenham’s first game at their new stadium, and it is one Lloris will no doubt feel he should be a part of.
“But Tottenham’s priority now is not about sentiment or any of their players’ personal feelings. All that matters is finishing in the top four, because getting Champions League football next season is so important for the club’s future.
“Pochettino has to decide what gives them the best chance of doing that and, in goal, he has a big decision to make
“Against Liverpool you could clearly see the disconnect between Lloris and his defence – they seem to be worried about when he is going to make his next error too.”